CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia lost 3,200 jobs in September, the eighth straight month of job losses, according to a report this week. The state's official unemployment level increased slightly to 7.6 percent.
January saw a job increase of 3,100 jobs. But every month since, the state has lost an average of 2,050 jobs, according to Jobs Count, a monthly report published by the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy.
During the first nine months of 2012, West Virginia lost 13,300 jobs, compared to a 12,600-job loss for the entire year of 2011. Total employment in the Mountain State was 747,500 in September, compared to 760,300 in December 2007, according to the report
Coal mining and logging jobs dropped by less than 1 percent between December 2007, when the recession began, and September 2012.
During that same period, manufacturing jobs dropped 18.5 percent, from 57,800 jobs to 47.100 jobs.
"As the state's population ages, the types of jobs available in West Virginia will change to suit the demands of an older population," the report states.
The economic sector predicted to gain the most jobs between 2010 and 2020 is education and health services, which includes people who serve the state's elderly populations in places like hospitals and nursing homes.