Construction Adds 2,400 Jobs in May 2008
Compared to May 2007, Wyoming’s construction sector created the most jobs of any sector (2,400) and posted the fastest job growth rate (9.1%). Overall, Wyoming employment increased by 7,700 jobs (2.7%). The state’s unemployment rate increased from 2.7% in April to 2.9% in May, but remained much lower than the U.S. rate (5.2%). It is not unusual for the unemployment rate to increase in the spring as new entrants join the labor force, start looking for work, and may not find work immediately.
From April to May, Wyoming gained 7,200 jobs (2.5%). This level of increase is consistent with normal seasonal patterns. Large seasonal job growth occurred in construction (2,200 jobs, or 8.2%), retail trade (700 jobs, or 2.2%), professional & business services (800 jobs, or 4.3%), leisure & hospitality (1,900 jobs, or 6.0%), and government (including public schools, colleges and hospitals; 1,100 jobs, or 1.6%).
Over the year Wyoming employment increased by 7,700 jobs (2.7%). The largest job gains were seen in construction (2,400 jobs, or 9.1%), government (1,500 jobs, or 2.2%), leisure & hospitality (1,000 jobs, or 3.1%), and transportation, warehousing, & utilities (700 jobs, or 4.9%). Other growing sectors included wholesale trade (400 jobs, or 4.5%), retail trade (400 jobs, or 1.3%), financial activities (400 jobs, or 3.5%), professional & business services (500 jobs, or 2.7%), and educational & health services (600 jobs, or 2.6%). Employment in the state’s information sector was unchanged from a year earlier. Minor job losses were seen in manufacturing (-200 jobs, or -2.0%) and other services (-200 jobs, or -1.7%).
Across Wyoming’s 23 counties unemployment rates remained low. Big Horn County posted the highest unemployment rate in May (4.1%), followed by Fremont County (3.7%), and Goshen and Laramie counties (both 3.6%). Compared to a year earlier, most county unemployment rates were stable or fell slightly.