© Copyright 2017 by the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, Research & Planning

Wyoming Unemployment Rate Falls to 4.8% in December 2016

The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell slightly from 4.9% in November to 4.8% in December (not a statistically significant change). Seasonally adjusted employment of Wyoming residents increased slightly from November to December, rising by an estimated 1,091 individuals (0.4%; not a statistically significant change). However, employment was lower than a year earlier (down 2,248 individuals, or –0.8%) and Wyoming’s labor force fell slightly (down 829 individuals, or –0.3%).

From November to December, unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and increased in nearly every county. As colder weather sets in, employment often falls in construction and other sectors. The largest unemployment rate increases occurred in Johnson (up from 4.4% to 5.3%), Crook (up from 3.7% to 4.5%), and Sheridan (up from 3.7% to 4.5%) counties. Teton County’s unemployment rate fell from 5.7% to 3.6% as the start of the ski season resulted in more jobs.

From December 2015 to December 2016, unemployment rates fell in nine counties, rose in 12 counties, and were unchanged in Laramie and Park counties. The largest over-the-year unemployment rate increases occurred in Campbell (up from 4.4% to 6.0%), Weston (up from 3.3% to 4.5%), Converse (up from 4.4% to 5.4%), and Natrona (up from 5.6% to 6.6%) counties. Unemployment rates fell in Lincoln (down from 4.9% to 4.4%), Teton (down from 4.0% to 3.6%), and Big Horn (down from 4.8% to 4.4%) counties.

Natrona County (6.6%) posted the highest unemployment rate in December. It was followed by Fremont (6.4%), Campbell (6.0%), and Sublette (5.8%) counties. The lowest unemployment rates were seen in Niobrara (2.8%), Albany (2.8%), and Goshen (3.0%) counties.

Total nonfarm employment (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) fell from 283,900 in December 2015 to 276,200 in December 2016, a decrease of 7,700 jobs (or –2.7%; a statistically significant decrease).

Research & Planning has scheduled the January employment news release for March 14, 2017.



Wyoming Seasonally Adjusted Statewide Labor Force Estimates
                                                                                            Change
                                                                                 Month                    Year
                                December-16  November-16  December-15    absolute     percent    absolute     percent
Total Civilian Labor Force          303,420      302,379      304,249       1,041        0.3%        -829       -0.3%
Employed                            288,746      287,655      290,994       1,091        0.4%      -2,248       -0.8%
Unemployed                           14,674       14,724       13,255         -50       -0.3%       1,419       10.7%
Unemployment Rate                       4.8          4.9          4.4

Definitions:
Employed All persons who, during the reference week, did any work at all as paid employees, worked in their own business, profession, or on their own farm, or worked 15 hours or more as unpaid workers in a family business.
Unemployed All persons who had no employment during the reference week, were available for work, and had made specific efforts to find employment sometime during the 4-week period ending with the reference week.
Labor Force All persons who meet the criteria given above as either employed or unemployed.
Unemployment Rate The number of unemployed as a percent of the labor force.
Seasonal Adjustment A statistical procedure to remove the impact of normal regularly recurring events (such as weather, major holidays, and the opening and closing of schools) from economic time series to better understand changes in economic conditions from month to month.


Current Employment Statistics (CES) Estimates and Research & Planning's Short-Term Projections, December 2016


Industry Sector                                            Current Employment
                               Research & Planning's        Statistics (CES)            N           %
                              Short-Term Projections            Estimates         Difference  Difference
Total Nonfarm                        275,451                    276,200                749         0.3%
Natural Resources & Mining            17,412                     19,300              1,888         9.8%
Construction                          20,171                     20,300                129         0.6%
Manufacturing                          9,454                     10,000                546         5.5%
Wholesale Trade                        7,683                      8,200                517         6.3%
Retail Trade                          31,291                     29,900             -1,391        -4.7%
Transportation & Utilities            13,969                     14,400                431         3.0%
Information                            3,765                      3,600               -165        -4.6%
Financial Activities                  10,626                     10,500               -126        -1.2%
Professional & Business Services      17,229                     17,900                671         3.7%
Educational & Health Services         27,664                     27,900                236         0.8%
Leisure & Hospitality                 33,526                     32,200             -1,326        -4.1%
Other Services                         9,536                     10,100                564         5.6%
Government                            73,125                     71,900             -1,225        -1.7%


Projections were run in November 2016 and based on QCEW data through June 2016.


For an explanation of the table shown above, please see New Monthly Feature in Trends: Comparison of Current Employment Statistics (CES) Estimates to Short-Term Employment Projections



Note Regarding Tables 1-3 Below

Not seasonally adjusted data reflect the actual economic conditions in a given area for a given time period. These data show the normal seasonal changes that occur in the economy. Most county unemployment rates are higher in the winter months because of seasonal job losses in construction, leisure & hospitality, and many other sectors. Similarly, most county unemployment rates are lower in the summer months as employment increases across the economy. Data users should use caution when comparing not seasonally adjusted data for different months, as at least part of the difference between months may reflect normal seasonal patterns.

In contrast, seasonally adjusted data have been subjected to a statistical procedure to remove the effects of normal changes that occur in the economy each year, such as seasonal hiring in the construction sector, the opening and closing of schools, and holiday hiring by retail trade establishments. There is no expectation that seasonally adjusted unemployment rates will be higher or lower in any particular month, except as the economy expands or contracts. The value of seasonally adjusted data is that it is easy to identify longer-term trends in the data and valid comparisons can be made between any two months in the series.

Research & Planning works in cooperation with the Bureau of Labor Statistics to develop and publish unemployment rates for each county in Wyoming. However, these data are not seasonally adjusted and therefore reflect seasonal changes each month.


Table 1: Wyoming counties not seasonally adjusted unemployment 
rates ranked from lowest to highest for December 2016

    
   County                         Rate*
Albany County, WY                  2.8
Niobrara County, WY                2.8
Goshen County, WY                  3.0
Teton County, WY                   3.6
Laramie County, WY                 4.1
Washakie County, WY                4.1
Carbon County, WY                  4.2
Platte County, WY                  4.2
Hot Springs County, WY             4.3
Big Horn County, WY                4.4
Lincoln County, WY                 4.4
Crook County, WY                   4.5
Sheridan County, WY                4.5
Weston County, WY                  4.5
Wyoming                            4.9
Park County, WY                    5.0
Uinta County, WY                   5.1
Johnson County, WY                 5.3
Sweetwater County, WY              5.3
Converse County, WY                5.4
Sublette County, WY                5.8
Campbell County, WY                6.0
Fremont County, WY                 6.4
Natrona County, WY                 6.6

*preliminary





Table 2: Wyoming counties not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates over-the-month rate
changes ranked from lowest to highest for December 2016

                                Month ago 		Over-the-Month  Over-the-Month
    County                         rate         Rate*     Rate Change   Percent Change
Teton County, WY                   5.7           3.6          -2.1        -36.8%
Campbell County, WY                5.9           6.0           0.1          1.7%
Hot Springs County, WY             4.2           4.3           0.1          2.4%
Platte County, WY                  4.1           4.2           0.1          2.4%
Sweetwater County, WY              5.2           5.3           0.1          1.9%
Weston County, WY                  4.4           4.5           0.1          2.3%
Albany County, WY                  2.6           2.8           0.2          7.7%
Goshen County, WY                  2.8           3.0           0.2          7.1%
Niobrara County, WY                2.6           2.8           0.2          7.7%
Converse County, WY                5.1           5.4           0.3          5.9%
Uinta County, WY                   4.8           5.1           0.3          6.3%
Wyoming                            4.6           4.9           0.3          6.5%
Big Horn County, WY                4.0           4.4           0.4         10.0%
Carbon County, WY                  3.8           4.2           0.4         10.5%
Washakie County, WY                3.6           4.1           0.5         13.9%
Fremont County, WY                 5.8           6.4           0.6         10.3%
Laramie County, WY                 3.5           4.1           0.6         17.1%
Lincoln County, WY                 3.8           4.4           0.6         15.8%
Natrona County, WY                 6.0           6.6           0.6         10.0%
Park County, WY                    4.4           5.0           0.6         13.6%
Sublette County, WY                5.2           5.8           0.6         11.5%
Crook County, WY                   3.7           4.5           0.8         21.6%
Sheridan County, WY                3.7           4.5           0.8         21.6%
Johnson County, WY                 4.4           5.3           0.9         20.5%

*preliminary

*preliminary




Table 3: Wyoming counties not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates over-the-year percent 
changes ranked from lowest to highest for December 2016
                                    Year ago                                Over-the-Year         Over-the-Year
   County                             Rate                  Rate*            Rate Change          Percent Change
Lincoln County, WY                     4.9                   4.4                  -0.5                -10.2%
Big Horn County, WY                    4.8                   4.4                  -0.4                 -8.3%
Teton County, WY                       4.0                   3.6                  -0.4                -10.0%
Uinta County, WY                       5.3                   5.1                  -0.2                 -3.8%
Albany County, WY                      2.9                   2.8                  -0.1                 -3.4%
Goshen County, WY                      3.1                   3.0                  -0.1                 -3.2%
Niobrara County, WY                    2.9                   2.8                  -0.1                 -3.4%
Platte County, WY                      4.3                   4.2                  -0.1                 -2.3%
Sheridan County, WY                    4.6                   4.5                  -0.1                 -2.2%
Laramie County, WY                     4.1                   4.1                   0.0                  0.0%
Park County, WY                        5.0                   5.0                   0.0                  0.0%
Hot Springs County,                    4.2                   4.3                   0.1                  2.4%
Sublette County, WY                    5.7                   5.8                   0.1                  1.8%
Washakie County, WY                    4.0                   4.1                   0.1                  2.5%
Johnson County, WY                     5.1                   5.3                   0.2                  3.9%
Sweetwater County, W                   5.1                   5.3                   0.2                  3.9%
Carbon County, WY                      3.9                   4.2                   0.3                  7.7%
Fremont County, WY                     6.1                   6.4                   0.3                  4.9%
Wyoming                                4.6                   4.9                   0.3                  6.5%
Crook County, WY                       3.8                   4.5                   0.7                 18.4%
Converse County, WY                    4.4                   5.4                   1.0                 22.7%
Natrona County, WY                     5.6                   6.6                   1.0                 17.9%
Weston County, WY                      3.3                   4.5                   1.2                 36.4%
Campbell County, WY                    4.4                   6.0                   1.6                 36.4%

*preliminary





Wyoming Department of Workforce Services
Research & Planning

January 24, 2017

Contacts:

David Bullard, Senior Economist, 307-473-3810

Carola Cowan, BLS Programs Supervisor, 307-473-3804


Labor Market Information | Send Us Mail