Rhode Island's unemployment rate for May ticks up a bit

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CRANSTON — The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training announced Thursday, June 20, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for May 2013 rose to 8.9 percent, up one-tenth of a percentage point from the April 2013 rate and down 1.7 percentage points from the May 2012 rate.

This represents the first over-the-month increase in the state’s unemployment rate since July 2011.

The U.S. unemployment rate was 7.6 percent in May 2013, up one-tenth of a percentage point from the previous month and down six-tenths of a percentage point over the year.

The number of unemployed R.I. residents—those residents classified as available for and actively seeking employment—was 49,600, up 200 from the April figure of 49,400. This represents the first over-the-month increase since May 2012. Over the year, the number of unemployed dropped by 9,600.

The number of employed R.I. residents was up 400 over the April figure, increasing to 509,300 in May. This is the largest number of employed since February 2009. Over the year, the number of employed R.I. residents increased 9,100 from May 2012.

The R.I. labor force totaled 558,900 in May 2013, up 600 from April 2013 and down 500 from May 2012.

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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.