Categories: Economic News



Posted on August 18, 2022 in Department Latest News, Newsroom

HONOLULU — The Hawaii State Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) announced today that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July was 4.1 percent, compared to the revised rate of 4.2 percent in June. Statewide, 649,550 were employed and 27,500 unemployed in July for a seasonally adjusted total labor force of 677,050. Nationally, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.5 percent in July, down from 3.6 percent in June.

The unemployment rate figures for the state of Hawaii and the US in this release are seasonally adjusted, according to the methodology of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The non-seasonally adjusted rate for the state was 3.8 percent in July, compared with the revised rate of 4.1 percent in June.

Sector payroll employment (establishment survey)

In another employment measure, total nonfarm payrolls rose by 7,600 for the month. The increase in employment has occurred in Leisure and Hospitality (+2,100); Education and Health Services (+1,800); Professional and business services (+800); Trade, transport and public services (+700); Financial activities (+200); and Other Services (+100). Within leisure and hospitality, the bulk of the gains occurred in Food and Beverage Services and, to a lesser extent, in Accommodation. Within the Education and Health Services, the expansion was mainly in Ambulatory Health Care Services, while secondarily in Hospitals; Residential care and nursing facilities; and Social Assistance. Within Professional and Business Services, employment increased in the Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services subsectors. Within the combined trade, transport and utilities grouping, gains were concentrated in retail trade.

Job losses were experienced in manufacturing (-100); Information (-100); and Construction (-300). Public employment increased by 2,400 jobs, mostly due to a smaller June-July seasonal drop in the Department of Education. For the year (July 2021 was the 16th month of pandemic effects), nonfarm payrolls have increased by 10,700, or 1.8 percent. However, compared to March 2020 (the last month before the effects of the pandemic), non-farm payrolls fell by 43,100 or -6.6 percent.

Technical notes

Components of the active population

The concepts and definitions used by the Local Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program are the same as those used in the Current Population Survey for national labor force data:

  • Civilian workforce. All people in the non-institutional civilian population aged 16 or over classified as employed or unemployed are included. (See definitions below.)
  • busy people. These are all persons who, during the reference week (the week including the 12th day of the month), (a) did any work as paid employees, worked in their own business or profession or on their own farm , or worked 15 hours or more. as unpaid employees of a business managed by a member of their family, or (b) were not working but had jobs from which they were temporarily absent due to vacation, illness, bad weather, childcare issues, leave of maternity or paternity, management conflict, job training or other family or personal reasons, whether or not they are paid for their free time or they are looking for other jobs. Each employed person is counted only once, even if they have more than one job.
  • Unemployed people. This includes all persons who did not have a job during the reference week, were available for work except for temporary illness, and had made specific efforts to find work at some point during the 4-week period ending with reference week People who were waiting to be reinstated in a job from which they had been fired did not need to have been looking for work to be classified as unemployed.
  • Unemployment. The percentage of unemployed in the civilian labor force [i.e., 100times (unemployed/civilian labor force)].

Seasonal adjustment

Seasonal fluctuations in the number of employed and unemployed reflect the patterns of hiring and firing that accompany regular events such as the winter holiday season and the summer holiday season. These variations make it difficult to know whether month-on-month changes in employment and unemployment are due to normal seasonal patterns or changing economic conditions. Therefore, the BLS uses a statistical technique called seasonal adjustment to address these issues. This technique uses historical labor force data and job count data to identify seasonal movements and calculate the size and direction of these movements. A seasonal adjustment factor is then developed and applied to the estimates to remove the effects of regular seasonal fluctuations on the data. Adjusted statistical series allow more meaningful comparisons of data between months or with an annual average.

Current Population Survey (Households) (EPC)

A survey conducted for the employment situation during the week including the 12thth day of each month generates unemployment rate statistics, which is a separate survey from the Establishment Survey that gives the industry job count. The CPS survey contacts approximately 1,000 households in Hawaii to determine a person’s current employment status. Employed persons consist of: 1) all persons who have done any work with pay or benefits during the reference week of the survey, 2) all persons who have done at least 15 hours of unpaid work in a family business managed by someone in your household, and 3) All people who were temporarily absent from their usual place of work, paid or not. People considered unemployed are those who do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the previous four weeks and are available for work. Temporarily dismissed workers are counted as unemployed, regardless of whether they have carried out a specific job-seeking activity. Unemployed persons are those who are not classified as employed or unemployed during the reference week of the survey.

Reference changes to local unemployment statistics data

State and substate data for 2010-2021 have revised inputs and reestimated to reflect revised population controls and model reestimation.

Change to monthly employment estimates

This release incorporates revised job count figures for the seasonally adjusted series. The revised data reflect historical corrections applied to unadjusted sector- or supersector-level series dating from 1990 to 2021. For years, analysts at the State Bureau of Research and Statistics DLIR have developed monthly estimates of employment for Hawai’i and its metropolitan areas. These estimates were based on a monthly survey of Hawaii businesses and analysts’ knowledge of our local economies. Beginning with the production of preliminary estimates for March 2011, responsibility for state and metropolitan area (MSA) estimates was transferred from individual state agencies to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

For Hawaii, this means that MSA transition statewide, Honolulu, and Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina estimates for both seasonally adjusted and non-seasonally adjusted areas are produced by BLS. State agencies will continue to provide BLS with information about local events that may affect estimates, such as strikes or large layoffs/hirings at businesses not covered by the survey, and to disseminate and analyze current employment statistics (CES) estimates. for local data. users BLS believes this change is designed to improve the cost efficiency of the CES program and reduce potential bias in state and area estimates. A portion of the cost savings generated by this change is expected to go toward increasing survey response rates in future years, which will reduce the level of statistical error in CES estimates. Until then, state analysts believe this change could result in greater month-to-month variability in industry employment numbers, especially in Hawaii’s counties and islands. You may contact BLS at (202) 691-6533 with any questions about these estimates.

Non-seasonally adjusted employment estimates for Hawai’i County, Kaua’i County, Maui Island, Moloka’i and Lāna’i are produced by the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism of the State of Hawaii.

Seasonally Adjusted Labor Force and Unemployment Estimates for Honolulu & Maui Co.

BLS publishes seasonally adjusted civilian labor force and unemployment estimates for all metropolitan areas, which include Honolulu City and County and Maui County.

BLS publishes this data each month in Metropolitan Area Employment and unemployment news release The schedule is available at

Alternative measures of labor underutilization

Alternative Measures of Labor Underutilization for States, Second Quarter 2021 to First Quarter 2022 Averages









United States














The six alternative measures of the state of labor underutilization based on the Current Population Survey (CPS) and compiled on a 4-quarter moving average basis defined:

U-1, unemployed 15 weeks or more, as a percentage of the civilian labor force;

U-2, persons losing employment and persons who completed temporary work, as a percentage of the civilian labor force;

U-3, total unemployed, as a percentage of the civilian labor force (this is the definition used for the official unemployment rate);

U-4, total unemployed plus discouraged workers, as a percentage of the civilian labor force plus discouraged workers;

U-5, total unemployed, plus discouraged workers, plus all other marginal workers*, as a percentage of the civilian labor force plus all marginal workers; i

U-6, total unemployed, plus all marginally bonded workers, plus total employed part-time for economic reasons, as a percentage of the civilian labor force plus all marginally bonded workers.

* People who are willing and available to work, and who have looked for work at some point in the previous 12 months (or since the end of their last job if they had one in the last 12 months), but who do not counted as unemployed because they had not looked for work in the four weeks prior to the survey, for reasons such as childcare or transportation problems, for example. Discouraged workers are a subset of marginal membership.

Note that the state (U-3) unemployment rates shown are derived directly from the CPS. As a result, these U-3 measures may differ from the state’s official unemployment rates over the most recent 4-quarter period. The latter are estimates developed from statistical models that incorporate CPS estimates as well as input data from other sources, such as state jobless claims data.


Contact with the media:

Dr. Eugene Tian

Economic Research and Analysis Division

Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism

(808) 586-2470

[email protected]

Charlene Chan

Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism

(808) 824-0134

[email protected]


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