Copyright 2002 by the Wyoming Department of Employment, Research & Planning

Wyoming Unemployment Unchanged in November
by: David Bullard, Senior Economist

Even as U.S. unemployment jumped from 5.4 to 5.7 percent in November, Wyoming unemployment remained at 3.8 percent. Wyoming job growth continued at a relatively rapid pace (2.3%), while the U.S. showed a net loss of jobs (-0.7%).

From October to November, Wyoming employment fell by 4,100 jobs or 1.6 percent. This seasonal decrease is consistent with decreases seen in previous years: employment fell by 3,600 jobs in 2000 and 5,000 jobs in 1999. Most of the decrease was related to the seasonal slowing of tourist activity. Employment fell by 1,300 jobs in eating & drinking places and 1,200 jobs in hotels & other lodging places. Construction employment fell by 800 jobs or 4.2 percent as colder weather set in.

When compared with November 2000, Wyoming employment grew by 5,500 jobs or 2.3 percent. Strong employment growth was seen in oil & gas extraction (1,900 jobs or 19.0%), Construction (1,000 jobs or 5.8%), and Services (1,700 jobs or 3.2%). Within Services, growth was especially strong in personal services (300 jobs or 15.8%), health services (600 jobs or 5.4%), private social services (600 jobs or 10.2%), and engineering & management services (500 jobs or 13.2%).

Employment fell by 500 jobs or 3.5 percent in Transportation, Communications, & Public Utilities (TCPU) when compared with November 2000. The largest job losses occurred in railroad transportation (-200 jobs or -6.3%) and communications (-100 jobs or -4.5%). Eating & drinking places lost 300 jobs or 1.8 percent, and Federal Government fell by 200 jobs or 2.8 percent.

As expected, most county unemployment rates increased from October to November. The largest increases occurred in Teton County (up from 2.2% to 4.4%), Park County (up from 3.4% to 4.5%), Hot Springs County (up from 3.2% to 4.1%), and Lincoln County (up from 4.9% to 5.7%). However, several counties experienced declining unemployment, including Goshen County (down from 2.4 % to 2.0%), Uinta County (down from 5.0% to 4.9%), and Laramie County (down from 3.2% to 3.1%).


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