Jobs growing at brisk pace

16,000 jobs in first three months of 2017

In the first three months of the year, the region added over 16,000 jobs. In March alone, the region gained 9,400 jobs, or about 303 jobs per day.

All four central Puget Sound counties — King, Pierce, Snohomish and Kitsap — gained new jobs, but most of the growth occurred in King and Snohomish counties.

Overall jobs grew at an annual growth rate of 2.9% between March 2016 and 2017.

Most sectors have gained jobs in 2017

Most sectors continued to gain jobs in March 2017. The services sector, which includes jobs from information technology (IT), business services, and recreation and food services, led the growth with over 37,500 jobs added since March 2016.

The retail sector grew at 7% over the past 12 months by adding 15,500 jobs, one of the largest increases in retail jobs since March 1990.

Unemployment rate lowest since 2008

The regional unemployment rate dropped to 3.8% (a 19% decrease) from March 2016 to March 2017— the lowest unemployment rate since April 2008. Unemployment rates are down in all four counties of the region in the first quarter of 2017.