© Copyright 2008 by the Wyoming Department of Employment, Research & Planning


Vol. 45 No. 6

Wyoming Unemployment Falls to 2.6% in April 2008

by: David Bullard, Senior Economist

Wyoming’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 3.1% in March to 2.6% in April (not a statistically significant change). The state’s labor force (the sum of employed and unemployed individuals) increased modestly from a year earlier (3,984 individuals, or 1.4%), and establishment survey-based nonagricultural employment growth continued at a solid pace (up 8,500 jobs, or 3.0%, from April 2007). In contrast to the situation in Wyoming, U.S. unemployment stood at 5.0% in April and national job growth was 0.3%.

From March to April Wyoming added 1,100 nonagricultural jobs (0.4%). This level of increase is smaller than the normal seasonal increase for April (2,560 jobs). Seasonal job gains in construction (1,100 jobs, or 4.3%), professional & business services (400 jobs, or 2.2%), and educational & health services (200 jobs, or 0.9%) were partially offset by job losses in retail trade (-300 jobs, or -0.9%) and leisure & hospitality (-400 jobs, or -1.3%).

Over the year the state gained 8,500 nonagricultural jobs (3.0%). The fastest job growth occurred in transportation, warehousing, & utilities (900 jobs, or 6.5%), construction (1,500 jobs, or 6.0%), and wholesale trade (500 jobs, or 5.7%). Slower job growth was seen in retail trade (600 jobs, or 2.0%), government (including public schools, colleges, & hospitals; 1,600 jobs, or 2.4%), and natural resources & mining (700 jobs, or 2.6%). Manufacturing employment fell slightly from a year earlier (-100 jobs, or -1.0%), while employment in information and other services was unchanged.

Most county unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and decreased from March to April. The highest unemployment rates were found in Big Horn (3.9%) and Fremont (3.6%) counties. Almost all unemployment rates fell from their year-ago levels. The largest decreases from April 2007 occurred in Washakie County (down from 4.0% to 3.1%) and Teton County (down from 3.9% to 3.0%).

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