Rose Lynch (608) 266-6753
Madison – Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Roberta Gassman today announced that Wisconsin’s preliminary seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was estimated at 4.5 percent and is at the lowest rate since September 2001 when the rate was at 4.4 percent. The last 12 months have shown a return to normal levels that were established prior to September 11, 2001. Wisconsin has shown 11 straight months of unemployment rates below 5.0 percent. This is a statistic that we have not seen since prior to September 2001. The March 2005 seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was estimated to be 4.6 percent, while April of 2004 was estimated to be 5.0 percent. The national seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was estimated at 5.2 percent, which was unchanged compared to March. The April 2004 national rate was estimated at 5.5 percent.
Wisconsin’s non-adjusted preliminary April 2005 rate was estimated at 4.7 percent compared to 5.5 percent in March and 5.2 percent in April of 2004. The national non-adjusted rate was reported at 4.9 percent in April of 2005, 5.4 percent in March of 2005, and 5.4 percent in March of 2004.
“Wisconsin’s labor market showed continued improvement last month with job gains of nearly 27,000 over last April, including more than 2,000 new jobs in manufacturing,” Secretary Gassman said. “Though encouraged by yet another positive jobs report, we understand that pockets of the state continue to struggle.”
Wisconsin’s nonfarm wage and salary jobs were estimated to be 2,810,300 in April 2005, which is up 34,200 jobs. The industries with the largest monthly employment gains were construction and leisure and hospitality, which combined for more than 21,700 more jobs over the month. The professional and business services sector gained 7,000 jobs. Retail trade gained 3,500 jobs monthly.
April’s job total is 26,600 jobs higher than it was in April 2004. The most significant annual job gains were in educational and health services, construction, and wholesale trade. Manufacturing gained 2,100 jobs compared to April 2004. Government employment shows 100 fewer jobs compared to last April.
April employment and unemployment figures for individual counties will be available May 25, 2005. This release also is available at http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/dwd/newsreleases/.