Pennsylvania sees jobless rate rise for 4th straight month

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate jumped again in May, as payrolls shrank.

The state Department of Labor and Industry said the jobless rate rose to 5.5 percent in May, up from 5.3 percent in April. The rate was 4.6 percent in January, and has risen four straight months now. The national rate was 4.7 percent in May.

Meanwhile, a survey of employers found that seasonally adjusted non-farm payrolls dropped by about 10,200 jobs in May, remaining just below 5.9 million. The largest drop, 4,500, was in the information sector, which the department says was directly impacted by the Verizon strike.

Friday’s figures are preliminary and could change.

The civilian labor force grew by 15,000, breaking 6.54 million for the first time ever. Employment dropped by 2,000 while unemployment grew by 17,000.

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