blank
Date: 5/19/2017
Information Contact 1: Robert Kabel : (208) 332-3570 ext. 3886 : 
Information Contact 2: Darlene Carnopis : (208) 332-3570 ext. 3439 :

Idaho April Unemployment Drops to 3.4 Percent

As labor force tightens, Idaho’s economy remains strong

Significant drops in the number of unemployed Idahoans and people looking for work pushed the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate down to 3.4 percent in April, narrowing an already tight labor market even further.

Idaho’s labor force – the number of people working or looking for work - dropped by 2,500, the second consecutive decline after 48 months of increases, while the number of unemployed dropped by 1,500. Combined with a slight decrease of 950 in total employment, the state’s unemployment rate was pushed down by one-tenth of one percent.

Year-over-year, Idaho’s labor force gains remained positive, up 12,200 from April 2016. Nonfarm payroll jobs increased 2.6 percent during this same timeframe, showing a net gain of 18,300 jobs and ranking third in the nation for percentage growth, tying with Florida and Georgia.

Month-over-month, Idaho’s total nonfarm payroll jobs increased by 1,200 in April of this year to 709,900.

Three industry sectors experienced larger-than-normal gains in April including leisure and hospitality (up 1,400), manufacturing (up 1,200) and education and health services (up 1,000). Natural resources, information, other services and government met seasonal expectations with no over-the-month job gains or declines. Professional and business services (down 1,700), trade, transportation and utilities (down 300), financial activities (down 200) and construction (down 200) all experienced larger-than-normal losses.

Idaho’s labor force participation rate – the percentage of people 16 years and older with jobs or looking for work – decreased to 63.7 percent, the lowest participation rate since February 2015. Idaho’s labor force participation rate has averaged 70 percent for men and 58 percent for women over the past 12 months.

More than 17,200 Idaho jobs were posted online in April according to the Conference Board. Of those, 3,500 were classified by department analysts as hard-to-fill. Health care-related jobs - physicians, surgeons, psychiatrists, occupational and physical therapists and support positions - accounted for 14 percent of all hard-to-fill jobs. By volume, registered nurses and truck drivers maintained their perpetual first and second spots for the largest number of job listings.

Annually, April’s unemployment insurance benefit payments increased by nearly 1.6 percent – up from $1.87 million to $1.9 million. The number of claimants declined by 1.4 percent to 6,100 from a weekly average of 6,200 a year ago.

Among Idaho’s Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA), Lewiston experienced the strongest seasonally adjusted over-the-year percentage growth of 3.9 percent, or 1,100 jobs, followed closely by the Boise metro area with 3.6 percent, or 10,800 jobs.

Month over month, Pocatello (up 1.1 percent) and Boise (up 0.2 percent) experienced increases. Together, the remaining MSAs experienced a decrease of 800 jobs: Coeur d'Alene (down 0.6 percent), Idaho Falls (down 0.3 percent) and Lewiston (down 0.7 percent).

Eighteen of Idaho’s 44 counties had unemployment rates above the state rate. Of these, six counties experienced rates above 6 percent: Clearwater, 8.1 percent; Benewah, 6.9 percent; Shoshone, 6.5 percent; and Lewis, 6.1 percent. Madison County continued to experience the lowest unemployment rate at 1.7 percent.

Details on Idaho’s unemployment picture can be found at lmi.Idaho.gov.

Seasonally Adjusted Data         

4/17

3/17

4/16

Civilian Labor Force

822,820

825,274

810,646

Unemployment                    

27,579

29,087

31,175

% Labor Force Unemployed

3.4

3.5

3.8

Total Employment

795,241

796,187

779,471











Unadjusted Forecast Data                

Civilian Labor Force

815,117

817,729

807,610

Unemployment 

24,687

31,732

31,401

% Labor Force Unemployed

3.0

3.9

3.9

Total Employment

790,430

785,997

776,209

       

Adjusting Text Size

Use your web browser to control the text size of our website. See below for where to find these controls.


Google Chrome:


Safari:


Internet Explorer 6:


Internet Explorer 7+:


Mozilla Firefox:


Mozilla Firefox 2:



See instructions for other web browsers.