New York’s Unemployment Rate Falls to 8.4%; New York’s Private Sector Jobs Grew by 0.5% in November, Rising Faster than Nation’s for 5th Month Straight

In November 2020, the number of private sector jobs in New York State increased over the month by 36,300, or 0.5%, to 7,385,800, according to preliminary figures released today by the New York State Department of Labor. This represents the seventh straight month of job gains for the Empire State.

By comparison, the number of private sector jobs in the U.S. grew by 0.3% in November 2020. New York State’s private sector job count grew faster than the nation’s for the fifth straight month in November.

New York State’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased from 9.2% in October to 8.4% in November 2020.

The number of private sector jobs in New York State is based on a payroll survey of 18,000 New York businesses conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Monthly payroll employment estimates are preliminary and subject to revision as more complete data become available the following month. The BLS calculates New York State’s unemployment rate based partly upon the results of the monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) of approximately 3,100 households in the State.

Note: Seasonally adjusted data are used to provide the most valid month-to-month comparison. Non-seasonally adjusted data are valuable in year-to-year comparisons of the same month – for example, November 2019 versus November 2020.

United States and New York State: October – November 2020

  • Jobs data (seasonally adjusted):

The table below compares the month-over-month change in total nonfarm and private sector jobs in the United States and New York State.

Change in Total Nonfarm and Private Sector Jobs
October – November 2020
Change in
Total Nonfarm Jobs:

(private sector + government)
Change in
Private Sector Jobs:
Net
%
Net
%
United States
+245,000
+0.2
+344,000
+0.3
New York State
+29,500
+0.3
+36,300
+0.5

2) Unemployment rates (seasonally adjusted):

The State’s unemployment rate is calculated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, using a statistical regression model that primarily uses the results from the monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) of approximately 3,100 households in New York State.

In November 2020, the statewide unemployment rate decreased from 9.2% to 8.4%. New York City’s unemployment rate decreased over the month from 13.0% to 12.1%. Outside of New York City, the unemployment rate decreased from 6.5% to 5.7%.

The number of unemployed New Yorkers decreased over the month by 64,400, from 835,600 in October to 771,200 in November 2020.

Unemployment Rates (%)*
*Data are preliminary and subject to change.
**Revised data.
November 2020*
October 2020
November 2019
United States
6.7
6.9
3.5
New York State
8.4
9.2**
3.9
New York City
12.1
13.0**
3.6
NYS, outside NYC
5.7
6.5**
4.1

United States, New York State and Metro Areas: November 2019 – November 2020

1) Jobs data (not seasonally adjusted):

The following table compares the changes in total nonfarm and private sector jobs occurring in the U.S., New York State and metro areas in the state, between November 2019 and November 2020.

Change in Total Nonfarm and Private Sector Jobs by Area*
November 2019 – November 2020
Change in
Total Nonfarm Jobs:

(private sector + government)
Change in
Private Sector Jobs:
Note: The sum of sub-state area job estimates will usually differ from the New York State total. This is because the State total is calculated separately from the sub-state areas and is estimated based on an independent sample.
Net
%
Net
%
United States
-9,172,000
-6.0
-7,952,000
-6.1
New York State
-978,800
-9.9
-937,700
-11.2
    Albany-Schenectady-Troy
-43,800
-9.1
-38,900
-10.3
    Binghamton
-6,600
-6.3
-5,600
-6.9
    Buffalo-Niagara Falls
-40,700
-7.1
-40,200
-8.4
    Dutchess-Putnam
-12,800
-8.5
-11,200
-9.0
    Elmira
-2,900
-7.8
-2,400
-7.8
    Glens Falls
-4,700
-8.7
-3,900
-9.0
    Ithaca
-2,800
-4.3
-3,300
-5.8
    Kingston
-3,200
-5.1
-2,600
-5.3
    Nassau-Suffolk
-109,100
-8.0
-102,700
-8.8
    New York City
-562,700
-11.9
-545,200
-13.2
    Orange-Rockland-Westchester
-61,100
-8.3
-58,200
-9.3
    Rochester
-50,800
-9.3
-44,800
-9.6
    Syracuse
-33,400
-10.2
-30,600
-11.5
    Utica-Rome
-9,500
-7.4
-7,300
-7.5
    Watertown-Fort Drum
-3,800
-9.1
-4,100
-13.9
    Non-metro counties
-37,300
-7.2
-32,900
-8.6

Change in jobs by major industry sector: November 2019 – November 2020

1) Jobs data (not seasonally adjusted):

The table below compares the change in jobs by major industry sector in New York State occurring between November 2019 and November 2020.

Change in Jobs by Major Industry Sector
November 2019 – November 2020
*Educational and health services is in the private sector. Government includes public education and public health services.
Sectors With Job Losses:
Leisure & Hospitality
-325,600
Trade, Transportation & Utilities
-158,400
Educational & Health Services*
-141,000
Professional & Business Services
-132,100
Other Services
-56,200
Manufacturing
-44,300
Government*
-41,100
Financial Activities
-40,600
Construction
-27,200
Information
-11,500
Natural Resources & Mining
-800

Note: The responsibility for the production of monthly estimates of state and metro area nonfarm employment by industry moved from the NYS Department of Labor’s Division of Research and Statistics to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), starting with the March 2011 estimates. More detailed information on the change is available on the BLS website.

Many economic data series have a seasonal pattern, which means they tend to occur at the same time each year (e.g., retail jobs usually increase in December). Seasonal adjustment is the process of removing seasonal effects from a data series. This is done to simplify the data so that they may be more easily interpreted and help to reveal true underlying trends. Seasonal adjustment permits comparisons of data from one month to data from any other month.

In New York State, payroll jobs data by industry come from a monthly survey of 18,000 business establishments conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Data are preliminary and subject to revision. Jobs data by industry do not include agricultural workers, the self-employed, unpaid family workers or domestic workers in private households.

Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, for New York and every other state are based on statistical regression models specified by the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The state’s unemployment rate is based partly upon the results of the Current Population Survey, which contacts approximately 3,100 households in New York each month.

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See Jobs and Unemployment Fact Sheet (opens in new window)