Wyoming Job Growth
Continues in March
by: David Bullard, Senior Economist
Boosted by high energy prices, Wyoming’s healthy job growth continued in March. An estimated 5,400 jobs (2.2%) were created compared to the previous year. The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased slightly, rising from 2.9 percent in February to 3.1 percent in March. It remained well below the U.S. unemployment rate of 5.2 percent.
From February to March employment increased by 1,800 jobs or 0.7 percent. This level of growth is consistent with normal seasonal patterns for March. Minor job losses in Educational & Health Services (-300 jobs or -1.4%) were more than offset by seasonal gains in Construction (200 jobs or 1.2%), Manufacturing (200 jobs or 2.2%), Professional & Business Services (200 jobs or 1.4%), and Government (1,100 jobs or 1.7%).
Employment rose by 5,400 jobs or 2.2 percent when compared to March 2004. As
in recent months, Natural Resources & Mining (including oil & gas)
posted the largest job gains (2,500 jobs or 13.1%). Other notable increases were
seen in Manufacturing (300 jobs or 3.3%), Wholesale Trade (300 jobs or 4.2%),
Transportation & Warehousing (400 jobs or 3.4%), Professional & Business
Services (500 jobs or 3.5%), Educational & Health Services (400 jobs or
1.9%), and Government (600 jobs or 0.9%).
Most county unemployment rates were stable or increased slightly from February to March. Washakie County posted the largest increase, rising from 4.8 percent in February to 5.4 percent in March. It was followed by Goshen County (up from 4.7% in February to 5.1% in March) and Lincoln County (up from 3.9% in February to 4.3% in March). The highest unemployment rate was found in two neighboring counties, Big Horn and Washakie (both 5.4% in March). Sublette County again had the lowest unemployment rate in the state (2.2%).
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