The unemployment rate dropped in the District, Maryland and Virginia in October, the Labor Department reported Tuesday, with all three jurisdictions seeing their greatest job growth in the professional services sector.
The report was strongest for Maryland, where the unemployment rate fell to 6.7 percent, from 6.9 percent, and 14,000 jobs were added. The state added more jobs in the private sector than in any one-month period since 1996.
The sector that contributed most to Maryland’s job growth was professional services, which added 3,900 positions in October. The retail industry and the leisure and hospitality sector also made gains, each adding 3,700 jobs.
In Virginia, the jobless rate ticked down to 5.7 percent, from 5.9 percent, but the state lost 600 jobs.
Three industries — professional services, financial activities, and retail and trade — added jobs in the commonwealth in October. Those areas gained 3,600 positions, 200 positions and 1,100 positions, respectively. All other sectors remained unchanged or shed jobs. The biggest decrease came from the government sector, which lost 1,400 jobs.