The devastating economic impact of the coronavirus in the Hudson Valley is reflected in new unemployment data released by the New York State Department of Labor Wednesday. While all 15 metro areas in New York lost private sector jobs since April 2019, the worst hit in the state was Orange-Rockland-Westchester, which lost 24.6 percent of its private sector jobs.
In comparison, private sector jobs in New York fell by 22.1 percent and in the nation by 14.5 percent.
The unemployment rate compared to a year ago spiked in all three metro regions of the lower and mid-Hudson Valley.
|Metro Region||Unemployment rate April 2020||Unemployment rate April 2019|
In comparison, in April 2020, New York State’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased from 4.1 percent to 14.5 percent. This change (+10.4 percentage points) was the state’s largest recorded monthly increase since current record keeping began in 1976. In addition, the number of unemployed New York State residents increased by 931,600, while the labor force dropped by 307,600 – both monthly records.
The number of unemployed New Yorkers increased by 931,600 over the month, from 388,700 in March to 1,320,300 in April 2020, representing the largest monthly uptick on record.
The April month-over-month decline in private sector payroll employment is the largest in the history of the current series (which goes back to 1990) and brought employment to its lowest level since February 1994.
Rates are calculated using methods prescribed by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The state’s area unemployment rates rely in part on the results of the Current Population Survey, which contacts approximately 3,100 households in New York State each month.
Those collecting unemployment are also receiving a $600 supplemental weekly benefit through the end of July. Democrats in Congress are pushing to have that benefit extended through January 2021, but Senate Republicans are cool to the idea, arguing that the increase in unemployment benefits is creating a disincentive for people to go back to work.