The number of people employed in Puerto Rico during November fell 1.8% from July.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released the information as part of its November employment household survey. It is among the first statistical reports of the impacts of the Hurricanes Irma and Maria, which hit the island in September, on the island’s economy.

Monthly Puerto Rico employment, November 2016 to November 2017

Employment was up 0.75% in November compared with October.

The household survey showed that the unemployment rate had risen to 10.8% compared to 10.6% in October and 9.8% in July.

November 2017 employment was down 1% from a year earlier, yet the unemployment rate was also down by 1.2 percentage points. The explanation for these simultaneous trends is that the number of unemployed declined even more than the number employed. Whereas the number of employed declined by 9,363, the number of unemployed declined by 18,813.

The decline in the number of unemployed may be due to emigration from the island or some other factor.

All statistics in this story are seasonally adjusted.

The Government Development Bank for Puerto Rico latest report of the other major statistical measure of the island’s economy – the economic activity index – is for July.

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