Department of Numbers

Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington Unemployment

The BLS reported that the unemployment rate for Seattle rose 0.1 percentage points in April 2021 to 5.6%. For the same month, the metro unemployment rate was 0.1 percentage points higher than the Washington rate. The unemployment rate in Seattle peaked in April 2020 at 17.1% and is now 11.5 percentage points lower. From a post peak low of 5.4% in February 2021, the unemployment rate has now grown by 0.2 percentage points. You can also compare Seattle unemployment with unemployment in other cities.

Unemployment Rate April 2021 Month/Month Year/Year
National 6.1% +0.1 -8.7
Washington 5.5% 0.0 -10.8
Seattle 5.6% +0.1 -11.5
Note: Metro level data is now seasonally adjusted.1 All comparisons are made with April 2021 data as May metro level unemployment data has not yet been released.

Unemployment Rate: Seattle, Washington, National

Seattle, Washington monthly unemployment rate chart

Note: Recessions shown in gray.

Seattle, Washington Unemployed

The number of people unemployed in Seattle peaked in April 2020 at 372,655. There are now 249,962 fewer people unemployed in the metropolitan area. From a recent trough of 117,193 in February 2021, the number of unemployed has now grown by 5,500. Seattle employment and jobs data (including jobs lost/gained in Seattle, Washington) is also available.

Unemployed Persons April 2021 Month/Month Year/Year
Seattle 122,693 +3,828 -249,962

Number of Unemployed Persons

Seattle, Washington Unemployment History

Date National
Unemployment Rate
Washington
Unemployment Rate
Seattle
Unemployment Rate
Seattle
Unemployed
May
2021
5.8%
April
2021
6.1% 5.5% 5.6% 122,693
March
2021
6.0% 5.5% 5.5% 118,865
February
2021
6.2% 5.6% 5.4% 117,193
January
2021
6.3% 6.0% 6.1% 132,237
December
2020
6.7% 6.3% 6.1% 132,882
November
2020
6.7% 6.7% 6.4% 137,689
October
2020
6.9% 7.0% 6.6% 144,055
September
2020
7.8% 8.0% 7.6% 163,984
August
2020
8.4% 9.1% 8.3% 180,645
July
2020
10.2% 10.8% 10.0% 217,499
June
2020
11.1% 10.8% 11.2% 242,005

1. Metro area unemployment rates are now seasonally adjusted. The BLS has started publishing smoothed seasonally adjusted metropolitan area data which makes comparisons to state and national data more relevant than the unadjusted numbers.