Missouri unemployment inches closer to nine percent.
It’s up four-tenths of a percent from February to March, reaching 8.7 percent, the higherst since December of 1983. It’s more than three percentage points higher than March, last year. And those are only the people who are still eligible for jobless benefits. The number of people who have exhausted their benefits or who have stopped looking is even higher.
Departmentof Economic Development spokesman John Fougere says construction, manufacturing, and wholesale trade employment took the biggest hits. But some fields seem to be relatively bulletproof.
He says educational services and healthcare seem to be less affected by economic downturns than many other fields. What has taken the biggest hits? Manufacturing lost 4,800 jobs. About 2,500 jobs were lsot in construction. Wholesale tade employment dropped by 1,500. Another 1,000 people in professional, and scientific and technical services lost their jobs.
March is usually a time when some parts of the economy start hiring people back for spring and summer work. Fougere thinks some of those segments are delaying hiring.
The department estimates 261-thousand Missourians were jobless last month.