Barnstable County Unemployment Rate for August is Slightly Up but Showing Steadiness

HYANNIS –There are more people working in Barnstable County than there was a year ago, but the unemployment rate in August was slightly up.

The unemployment rate for Barnstable County was 3.3 percent last month, that’s up from 3 percent in August 2016.

But it’s less than the 3.8 percent rate in July.

More than 121,000 were employed in the County last month, compared to over 119,000 in August 2016.

Cape and Islands Workforce Investment Board Executive Director David Augustinho says that those numbers show a steady employment rate, but local businesses are having difficulty finding workers.

“The Cape is not in a growth mode now,” said Augustinho. “Back in the 90s, the Cape was one of the fastest growing counties in the U.S. and that has certainly all leveled off.”

In Plymouth County, it was 3.9 percent last month, compared to 3.6 percent last August.

The trend also continued for the islands, where Nantucket County saw slight increase from 1.6 percent in August 2016 to 1.8 percent last month and in Dukes County, where it went from 2.4 percent to 2.6 percent last month.

With the unemployment numbers, Augustinho admits that there are two sides to every story.

“If there’s a glut of individuals available for work, they’re suffering through lower wages, and of course if there’s not enough people available for work, then the employers are suffering,” said Augustinho.

The state unemployment rate for also saw an uptick, going from 3.4 in August 2016 to 3.7 percent in August 2017.

By JUSTIN SAUNDERS, CapeCod.com Newscenter

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