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U.S., Washington and Seattle unemployment rates, seasonally adjusted
February 2008 through February 2013

In the tech industry, we’ve been seeing a steady stream of hiring for several years now. In fact, companies like, F5 Networks, Tableau, Zillow and others in the region continue to fight hard for the very best talent. The market is so red hot that Google earlier this month announced plans to double the size of its Kirkland campus with room for as many as 1,000 new employees.

The boom in tech is certainly having an impact on the overall economy in the Seattle area (Have you been in the South Lake Union or Pioneer Square neighborhoods recently?).

And now we are seeing some of the impact. Today, the Washington state Employment Security Department release figures showing that the unemployment rate in the Seattle metro area has dropped to 5.9 percent. That marks a continued downward trend in the unemployment rate in the state’s most populous city, and it is the first time that the jobless rate has dipped below six percent in more than four years (as the chart above shows). The last time it dipped below six percent was in October 2008 when the rate stood at 5.8 percent.

The state as a whole has not kept up with the job pace of Seattle. In fact, the jobless rate flattened at 7.5 percent in the state in February with labor economist Anneliese Vance-Sherman calling it “relatively uneventful.” The state added an estimated 4,000 jobs last month, and the state jobless rate has been stuck at 7.5 percent for the past three months.

Full unemployment report here.

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