The Houston area’s unemployment rate rose to 6.9% in May, up from 6.3% the previous month, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. The local rate a year before was 4.4%. The figures, unlike statewide and national numbers, are not seasonally adjusted. According to the agency, 194,500 area workers were unemployed in May, compared to 176,700 in April. Statewide, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 7.1% in May, up from a revised 6.6% in April. The national rate currently stands at 9.4%. Texas has lost 222,600 jobs in the last 12 months. “The Texas unemployment rate continued to follow the national unemployment rate’s upward trend,” said Texas Workforce Commission Chairman Tom Pauken. “Few industries were spared in May as Texas employers continued to report job losses. Continued unemployment claims increased in Texas as well.” The Lubbock area had the state’s lowest jobless rate, at 4.6%. The highest rate was in the McAllen area, at 9.4%.
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