Wyoming Unemployment Rate Falls to 4.2% in February 2014
The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported that the state’s seasonally adjusted1 unemployment rate fell from 4.3% in January to 4.2% in February. Wyoming’s unemployment rate is now at its lowest point since December 2008, when it was 3.9%. Unemployment remained well below its year-ago level of 4.8% and was significantly lower than the current U.S. unemployment rate of 6.7%. Seasonally adjusted employment of Wyoming residents increased, rising by 1,639 individuals (0.6%) from January to February.
Most county unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and decreased slightly from January to February. In Wyoming, during a typical year, almost all county unemployment rates peak in January, and then decline through the spring and summer months, reaching their lowest point in August or September. The largest over-the-month unemployment rate decreases were seen in Platte (down from 5.5% to 5.0%), Weston (down from 4.7% to 4.3%), and Park (down from 6.2% to 5.9%) counties.
Compared to a year earlier, unemployment rates fell in every county, perhaps indicating continued economic recovery. The largest declines were reported in Sheridan (down from 7.1% to 5.7%), Teton (down from 5.5% to 4.4%), and Sublette (down from 4.5% to 3.4%) counties.
The highest unemployment rates were found in Lincoln (6.9%), Johnson (6.5%), and Fremont (6.4%) counties. Sublette and Converse counties tied for the lowest unemployment rate (3.4%) and they were followed by Campbell (3.7%), Niobrara (3.8%), and Albany (3.9%) counties.
Total nonfarm employment (measured by place of work) rose from 281,000 in February 2013 to 284,000 in February 2014, a gain of 3,000 jobs (1.1%).
1Seasonal adjustment is 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.