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Long Island unemployment rate falls to 3.8% in June

The number of jobless residents fell to 57,400, the lowest since 2007, according to the New York State Department of Labor.

Stephanie Loviglio, from FREE Inc., hands out information

Stephanie Loviglio, from FREE Inc., hands out information at a job expo for adults with special needs at Farmingdale State College in June. Photo Credit: Linda Rosier

Long Island’s June unemployment rate fell to 3.8 percent, the lowest rate for the month in 11 years, data released Tuesday by the New York State Department of Labor show. In June 2017 it was 4.3 percent.

The Island has now halved its unemployment rate since the 7.6 percent in June 2012, when the region was still recovering from the last recession.

The number of employed residents in the latest report rose by 11,600 to 1.471 million, the highest since the department began using its current methodology in 1990. Meanwhile, the number of unemployed fell by 7,400 to 57,400, the lowest since 2007.

The numbers indicate "that more people are re-entering the labor force in anticipation of obtaining jobs," and they're finding them, said John A. Rizzo, economics professsor at Stony Brook University and chief economist of the Long Island Association trade group.

That continues to push the jobless rate lower. 

"Combined with a reduction in the number of unemployed residents, Long Island's unemployment rate is nearing historical lows," said Shital Patel, labor-market analyst in the department's Hicksville office. 

The unemployment data follow last week’s employment report showing a strengthening Long Island job market.  The Island gained 15,600 jobs in June, compared with a year earlier, pushing the total number of jobs to a record 1.387 million. Those data are based on a survey of Long Island businesses. Numbers in the latest report are drawn from a census survey of local residents, regardless of where they work.    

The department uses year-over-year comparisons because local data aren’t adjusted for seasonal fluctuations.

On Long Island, Southampton Town had the lowest unemployment rate, 3.4 percent. Hempstead Village had the highest, 4.6 percent.

Among the state's metro areas, Long Island tied with Glens Falls for the lowest rate. On a county basis, Nassau's 3.7 percent ranked it fourth, along with Queens.  Suffolk ranked fifth, with 3.8 percent. 

Long Island's overall 3.8 percent rate compares with 4.2 percent for both the state and the nation in the same seasonally unadjusted period.  

LI unemployment by the numbers:

Islandwide: 3.8%

Lowest: Southampton Town 3.4%

Highest: Hempstead Village 4.6%

Source: NY State Department of Labor

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