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Wyoming Unemployment Falls to 5.5% in October 2020

The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 6.1% in September to 5.5% in October. Wyoming’s unemployment rate has decreased in each of the past six months and is much lower than the U.S. unemployment rate of 6.9%. Despite several months of decreases, Wyoming’s unemployment rate remains higher than its October 2019 level of 3.7%.

From September to October, unemployment rates fell in most counties. The largest decreases were seen in Natrona County (down from 8.9% to 7.8%), Sweetwater County (down from 6.9% to 6.0%), Washakie County (down from 4.7% to 3.9%), and Uinta County (down from 6.3% to 5.5%). Unemployment increased slightly in Teton County (up from 4.2% to 4.4%) and Niobrara County (up from 3.4% to 3.6%). Teton County’s unemployment rate often increases in October as the summer tourist season winds down.

From October 2019 to October 2020, unemployment rates rose in 22 of Wyoming’s 23 counties. The largest increases occurred in areas of the state that are highly dependent on the energy sector. Natrona County’s jobless rate rose from 3.8% to 7.8%, Campbell County’s rate rose from 3.5% to 6.4%, and Converse County’s rate rose from 2.7% to 5.3%. In contrast, Goshen County’s unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.6%, and unemployment rose only slightly in Albany (up from 2.8% to 2.9%) and Big Horn (up from 3.6% to 3.8%) counties.

In October, the highest unemployment rates were reported in Natrona County at 7.8%, Campbell County at 6.4%, and Sweetwater County at 6.0%. The lowest unemployment rates were found in Albany County at 2.9%, Weston County at 3.3%, and Crook and Carbon counties, both at 3.5%.

Total nonfarm employment in Wyoming (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) decreased from 290,600 in October 2019 to 277,700 in October 2020, a decline of 12,900 jobs (-4.4%).

Research & Planning has scheduled the November unemployment news release for December 22, 2020.

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