DOVER — Despite gaining about 8,000 new jobs in the First State last month, Delaware’s unemployment rate remained unchanged.
According to its monthly report, released Friday, the Delaware Department of Labor calculated that the state’s unemployment level remained at 4.5% — the same as March.
Until April, Delaware’s unemployment rate had dropped each month since June of 2021 when it was at 5.7%.
Delaware’s Labor Force Participation rate was 61.2% in April, .8% lower than a year ago.
The LFP rate is the percentage of the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years old and older that is working or actively looking for work.
It is an important labor market measure because it represents the amount of labor resources available to produce goods and services, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Two years ago, in April 2020, Delaware’s LFP hit 59.4% — the lowest rate recorded since 1976.
The national LFP rate, 62.2%, was a net increase of a half of a percentage point from the year before, driven by increased women and minority participation, according to the Delaware Department of Labor’s report.
The total number of Delaware’s civilian labor force in April was 498,900. Of that group, 476,500 were employed last month — 22,400 were unemployed.
The U.S. unemployment rate, which has also been trending down for almost a year, remained unchanged, too, at 3.6%.
Locally, Dover had the highest unemployment rate at 6.9%, followed by Wilmington at 6.4%.
While the state’s rate of unemployed residents didn’t change in April, it did change in the city of Newark. In March, the western New Castle County municipality had an unemployment rate of 4.6% — in April it was 3.7%.
Of Delaware’s three counties, Sussex had the lowest rate at 4.2%. New Castle County was at 4.3% and Kent County was the highest at 5.1%, according to the report.
Delaware’s construction and manufacturing sectors each recorded an increase of about 1,000 new employees in April from March.
According to the Delaware Department of Labor report, the First State’s private sector employees worked about 33 hours a week in April and brought home an average of $976 per week.