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La.’s “Strong Employment Growth” Leading To Low Unemployment Rate

construction workers (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)
construction workers (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)

There are now two million people working in Louisiana. That’s happening for the first time in the Bayou State’s history, according to our news partners at Louisiana Radio Network.

“Our private sector has been adding jobs for 42 straight months now,” says Louisiana Workforce Commission spokesperson Tom Guarisco. “So, we’ve seen strong employment growth, this trend, in place for a long time.” According to data released Friday by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 35,000 more people employed in Louisiana than there were at this time last year.

Louisiana unemployment rate is 4.5%, with the biggest job gains coming in leisure and hospitality, which added 8,400 jobs. Construction and education and health services follow that. “The real spike in employment that we are expecting in the construction industry, tradecraft construction, we need 80,000 additional workers in that sector through 2016 to support all of the major industrial projects that have already been announced,” says Guarisco, who says the number of people working should continue to grow.

Governor Bobby Jindal points to overhauling the ethics code, revamping the workforce training system and cutting taxes as leading to the state’s low unemployment rate, which Guarisco says is the best in the South. “That tells us that there is good flow of people from the unemployment rolls to jobs and, because private sector employers have been adding jobs for so long now, 42 months, that there are more and more opportunities for them.”

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