State Unemployment Rate Lowest In 45 Years

MacIver News Service | January 18, 2018

By Bill Osmulski

MADISON, Wis. – Wisconsin’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.0 percent in December for the first time in 45 years, according to a Department of Workforce Development announcement Thursday morning.

State officials say Wisconsin’s unemployment rate has never been below 3 percent, and that it’s never been that low for the month of December. The rate was 3.2 percent in November, which means 6,800 people got off unemployment in December.

The labor force and overall employment also improved from November to December. The state added 2,300 people to the labor force and 9,200 more people found jobs.

The DWD’s announcement also included the latest quarterly data comparing spring 2016 to spring 2017. It shows the state’s three fastest growing industries are construction (+4.7%), natural resources and mining (4.5%), and leisure and hospitality (2.7%)

The US employment rate continues to trail Wisconsin at 4.1 percent but is also improving. Last December national unemployment was at 4.7 percent, while Wisconsin’s was at 4.1 percent.