The jobless rate for Buffalo-Niagara Falls increased to 6 percent in August, rising from 4.5 percent in the same month a year ago, the state Department of Labor reported Thursday.
The Buffalo area has the highest jobless rate of the measured metropolitan areas in the state. Also, it is the highest unemployment rate for August in this decade, topping 5.8 percent in 2003.
The unemployment figure, which matched July, coincided with very little private-sector job growth — 100 such positions, or less than 0.1 percent, added year-over-year. The Labor Department said non-farm jobs locally are up 2,000, or 0.4 percent, from last year.
Rochester’s unemployment rate was 5.7 percent, compared to 4.1 percent from August 2007 and 5.6 percent in July. No other market in New York state, however, has suffered as many job losses. The monthly figures show a decline of 4,700, or 1.1 percent, from last year and an overall non-farm job loss of 7,100, or 1.4 percent.
New York state’s private-sector employment increased over the month by 3,000, or less than 0.1 percent, to 7.26 million. The state’s unemployment rate, after seasonal adjustment, increased to 5.8 percent in August 2008 — its highest level since June 2004 — from 5.2 percent in July.