© Copyright 2021 by the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, Research & Planning

Wyoming Unemployment Rises to 5.4% in April 2021

The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased slightly from 5.3% in March to 5.4% in April. However, Wyoming’s unemployment rate was much lower than the current U.S. rate of 6.1%. Wyoming’s labor force, the sum of employed and unemployed individuals, increased by 5,141 people, or 1.8% from a year earlier.

From March to April, unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and fell in most counties around the state. Unemployment rates often decrease in April as seasonal job gains occur in construction, retail trade, and professional & business services. The largest unemployment rate decreases were seen in Park (down from 5.9% to 5.1%), Big Horn (down from 6.1% to 5.3%), and Johnson (down from 5.9% to 5.2%) counties. Teton County was the exception. Its unemployment rate rose from 4.2% in March to 7.0% in April as the ski season ended.

From April 2020 to April 2021, jobless rates rose in 16 counties and fell in seven counties. The largest increases occurred in Converse (up from 4.1% to 6.1%), Niobrara (up from 2.6% to 4.1%), Big Horn (up from 3.9% to 5.3%), and Uinta (up from 5.5% to 6.3%) counties. Unemployment rates fell in Teton (down from 12.5% to 7.0%), Park (down from 5.9% to 5.1%), Laramie (down from 5.4% to 4.6%), and Johnson (down from 5.9% to 5.2%) counties.

Natrona County had the highest unemployment rate in April at 7.4%. It was followed by Sublette County at 7.1%, Teton County at 7.0%, and Sweetwater County at 6.8%. The lowest unemployment rates were found in Weston County at 3.9% and Crook and Albany counties, each at 4.0%.

Total nonfarm employment in Wyoming (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) rose from 257,100 in April 2020 to 267,900 in April 2021, an increase of 10,800 jobs (4.2%). Nonfarm employment was unusually low in April 2020 because of widespread economic disruptions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Research & Planning has scheduled the May unemployment news release for June 21, 2021.


Wyoming Seasonally Adjusted Statewide Labor Force Estimates
                                                                                             Change
                                                                                  Month                    Year
                                   April-21     March-21     April-20      absolute     percent    absolute     percent
Total Civilian Labor Force          296,101      295,613      290,960         488        0.2%       5,141        1.8%
Employed                            280,183      279,888      274,922         295        0.1%       5,261        1.9%
Unemployed                           15,918       15,725       16,038         193        1.2%        -120       -0.7%
Unemployment Rate                       5.4          5.3          5.5

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.



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 April 2021
 
                  
   County                            Rate*
Weston County, WY                     3.9
Albany County, WY                     4.0
Crook County, WY                      4.0
Niobrara County, WY                   4.1
Goshen County, WY                     4.2
Hot Springs County, WY                4.5
Platte County, WY                     4.5
Carbon County, WY                     4.6
Laramie County, WY                    4.6
Lincoln County, WY                    4.9
Washakie County, WY                   5.0
Park County, WY                       5.1
Johnson County, WY                    5.2
Sheridan County, WY                   5.2
Big Horn County, WY                   5.3
Wyoming                               5.6
Fremont County, WY                    5.9
Converse County, WY                   6.1
Campbell County, WY                   6.3
Uinta County, WY                      6.3
Sweetwater County, WY                 6.8
Teton County, WY                      7.0
Sublette County, WY                   7.1
Natrona County, WY                    7.4

*preliminary


Table 2: Wyoming counties not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates over-the-month rate
changes ranked from lowest to highest for April 2021

                                    Month ago                Over-the-Month   
    County                             rate         Rate*     Rate Change    
Big Horn County, WY                     6.1          5.3         -0.8
Park County, WY                         5.9          5.1         -0.8
Johnson County, WY                      5.9          5.2         -0.7
Platte County, WY                       5.1          4.5         -0.6
Sublette County, WY                     7.7          7.1         -0.6
Carbon County, WY                       5.1          4.6         -0.5
Natrona County, WY                      7.9          7.4         -0.5
Sheridan County, WY                     5.7          5.2         -0.5
Crook County, WY                        4.4          4.0         -0.4
Hot Springs County, WY                  4.9          4.5         -0.4
Laramie County, WY                      5.0          4.6         -0.4
Albany County, WY                       4.3          4.0         -0.3
Lincoln County, WY                      5.2          4.9         -0.3
Weston County, WY                       4.2          3.9         -0.3
Wyoming                                 5.9          5.6         -0.3
Campbell County, WY                     6.5          6.3         -0.2
Converse County, WY                     6.3          6.1         -0.2
Fremont County, WY                      6.1          5.9         -0.2
Niobrara County, WY                     4.3          4.1         -0.2
Sweetwater County, WY                   7.0          6.8         -0.2
Uinta County, WY                        6.5          6.3         -0.2
Washakie County, WY                     5.2          5.0         -0.2
Goshen County, WY                       4.2          4.2          0.0
Teton County, WY                        4.2          7.0          2.8

*preliminary





Table 3: Wyoming counties not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates over-the-year
changes ranked from lowest to highest for April 2021
 
                                     Year ago                Over-the-Year   
   County                              Rate         Rate*     Rate Change    
Teton County, WY                       12.5          7.0         -5.5
Laramie County, WY                      5.4          4.6         -0.8
Park County, WY                         5.9          5.1         -0.8
Johnson County, WY                      5.9          5.2         -0.7
Lincoln County, WY                      5.2          4.9         -0.3
Natrona County, WY                      7.6          7.4         -0.2
Wyoming                                 5.8          5.6         -0.2
Sublette County, WY                     7.2          7.1         -0.1
Hot Springs County, WY                  4.4          4.5          0.1
Sheridan County, WY                     5.1          5.2          0.1
Campbell County, WY                     6.1          6.3          0.2
Platte County, WY                       4.3          4.5          0.2
Fremont County, WY                      5.5          5.9          0.4
Sweetwater County, WY                   6.3          6.8          0.5
Albany County, WY                       3.4          4.0          0.6
Weston County, WY                       3.3          3.9          0.6
Carbon County, WY                       3.9          4.6          0.7
Crook County, WY                        3.3          4.0          0.7
Goshen County, WY                       3.5          4.2          0.7
Washakie County, WY                     4.3          5.0          0.7
Uinta County, WY                        5.5          6.3          0.8
Big Horn County, WY                     3.9          5.3          1.4
Niobrara County, WY                     2.6          4.1          1.5
Converse County, WY                     4.1          6.1          2.0

*preliminary


Wyoming Department of Workforce Services
Research & Planning

May 24, 2021

Contacts:
David Bullard, Senior Economist, 307-473-3810

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


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