Unemployment in Alaska for August was 6.7 percent

Employment in Alaska dropped by an estimated 0.6 percent, or 2,000 jobs, with retail taking the biggest hit, a loss of 1,000 jobs, state labor officials say.

Professional and business services lost 400 jobs over the year as did the oil and gas industry, according to the Sept. 21 update from economists with the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Construction jobs rose by 300, in large part due to increased activity in Anchorage and the Interior. Health care jobs increased by 700, and employment in transportation, warehousing and utilities by 200 jobs.

Public sector employment was down by 300 over the year. Federal jobs were up by 100 positions while local government lost 400 and state government was flat.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Alaska dropped for the fourth time this year.

For August, the rate was 6.7 percent, down from 6.9 percent in July and down six-tenths of a percent from the beginning of the year, compared to the national rate of 3.9 percent.


Not-seasonally adjusted rates fell in most borough and census areas, following an expected seasonal pattern.

Labor officials noted that fishing and tourism continue to drive the state’s lowest unemployment rates, with the lowest rate in the Aleutians East borough, 1.6 percent, and Skagway and the Denali Borough both at 2.7 percent. Unemployment in the Yukon-Koyukuk census area, Northwest Arctic Borough, Bethel census area, and Nome census area, all topped 10 percent.