NYC September Jobless Rate Falls to 9.3%, Lowest in 16 Months

New York City’s seasonably adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 9.3 percent in September, the lowest in 16 months, the state Labor Department said.

The city jobless rate was down from 9.4 percent in August and 10.3 percent in September 2009, the department in Albany said in a report today. The state rate remained at 8.3 percent.

In the city, the nation’s most-populous, private employment increased by 8,200, below the 10-year average monthly gain of 24,100. It rose by 33,700 in the 12 months ending in September, the report said.

The number of financial-industry workers decreased by 1,600 to 432,200, though that total is 3,900 higher than it was in September 2009. Wall Street gained jobs in July and August.

“The broad trend shows over-the-year growth in jobs, and unemployment rates going down all year,” James Brown, a Labor Department economist, said in a telephone interview. “The story these numbers tell is basically positive, although September’s growth was not as strong as we had in August.”

Leisure and hospitality and business services, two industries that have added jobs consistently during 2010, each experienced monthly decreases.

Jobs in tourism, restaurants and entertainment, which have gained 7,700 workers over the previous 12 months, lost 400 jobs in September to a total of 321,300.

Professional services such as law, accounting, architecture, computer systems and advertising, which added 700 jobs over the year, lost 9,000 jobs in September, falling to 566,000 from 575,000 in August, the department said.

Retail Gains

The biggest job gains came in transportation and warehousing, which gained 5,600 positions, and in retail, which added 1,200 jobs in September. Motion picture production showed an increase of 2,700 jobs to 43,100. While educational health services added 12,200 positions, those statistics rise every September and don’t signal a trend, Brown said.

The state’s unemployment rate has consistently been lower than the city’s over the year because the “state economy didn’t experience the volatility, the highs and lows that the city did, and many areas of the state have flat or declining populations while the city’s population is growing,” Brown said.

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