D.C. Is on Track for Its Best Year of Job Growth Since 2004

From The Washington Post:

The D.C. metropolitan area added 65,500 jobs in the one-year period ending in November, a 2 percent growth rate that outstripped the rest of the nation as a whole, according to government data released Friday morning. An analysis by the Stephen S. Fuller Institute, a new economic research group at George Mason University, found that the region is on track to average 2.2 percent employment growth in 2016, which would be the strongest growth rate here since 2004.

D.C.’s unemployment rate dropped 0.1 percent from October to November, landing at 6 percent. The unemployment rates for Maryland and Virginia held steady at 4.2 percent in November compared to the month prior.

Those watching the local economy say the job growth in 2016 appears to be strongest in the private sector. The last time the D.C. area showed these kinds of employment gains was a dozen years earlier when defense spending rose sharply during the military build-up in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This time, though, the gains are coming at a time when government budgets have remained relatively stable and there is no new surge in funding. The professional and business services sector saw the strongest growth. Lower-paying sectors like health services, leisure and hospitality also showed substantial gains.

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