Idaho June Unemployment Rate Declines to 3.1 Percent

Jul 21st, 2017 | By | Category: Regional News

Press Release

Idaho State Cutout 3.1 percentIdaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell for the fourth consecutive month in June to 3.1 percent, further squeezing an already tight labor market.

June’s unemployment drop is the result of more than 2,000 Idahoans exiting the workforce or ending their work search. Total employment dropped by nearly 700 while the total number of unemployed fell by almost 1,300.

Nationally, the unemployment rate rose to 4.4 percent — up from May — as the country’s labor force increased by 0.2 percent and the participation rate rose slightly to 62.8 percent.

Month-over-month, June estimates show Idaho’s total nonfarm payroll jobs increased by one-tenth of a percent, up 400 to 709,200. Five of the state’s 11 industry sectors showed job declines including natural resources, manufacturing, financial activities, other services and trade, transportation and utilities. Five sectors showed job gains. Construction jobs increased by 600, government by 500, professional and business services by 400, information by 200, and education and health services by 200. Leisure and hospitality was unchanged from May.

The state’s labor force participation rate — the percentage of people 16 years and older with jobs or looking for work — dropped to 63.2 percent, the lowest participation rate since June 1976. Idaho’s participation rate has fallen just under 1 percent from February.

Year-over-year, Idaho’s labor force still showed gains, up 5,100 from June 2016. Idaho’s nonfarm jobs have shown steady annual growth for 90 months since the trough of the past recession in January 2010. None of Idaho’s 11 industry sectors were down from their June 2016 employment levels. Nonfarm payroll jobs were up 2.2 percent with a net gain of 15,200 jobs. Construction showed the largest annual job growth, up 4.6 percent. Strong job gains also occurred in education and health services, government services, leisure and hospitality, and manufacturing.

Nearly 5,200 of June’s 24,200 online job postings are classified by department analysts as hard-to-fill. Health care jobs — physicians, surgeons, psychiatrists, occupational and physical therapists and support positions — accounted for 28 percent of all hard-to-fill jobs. Registered nurses, retail salespersons and truck drivers made up the largest number of job listings.

Annually, Idaho’s unemployment insurance benefit payments were down nearly 10 percent in June, from $1.40 million a year ago to $1.27 million. The number of claimants also fell by 10 percent from a weekly average of 4,930 a year ago to 4,450.

Twenty-one of Idaho’s 44 counties had unemployment rates at or above the state rate in June. Of these, only two counties remain at or above 6 percent — Clearwater at 6.0 percent and Shoshone at 6.1 percent. Madison County’s unemployment rate remained the lowest at 1.7 percent.

Details on Idaho’s unemployment picture can be found at

June rates

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