DWD: August Unemployment Rates Announced

Rose Lynch (608) 266-6753

Adjusted Data

Madison – Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Roberta Gassman today announced that Wisconsin’s preliminary seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for August was 4.6 percent, down from 4.7 percent in July and 4.9 percent in August 2004. The U.S. seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in August was 4.9 percent, which was down from 5.0 percent in July.

“Wisconsin’s labor market continues to improve and our economy continues to grow stronger,” Secretary Gassman said. “The good news is, Wisconsin exports are growing at a faster pace than national exports, and that means jobs for Wisconsin’s working families.”

Unadjusted Data

Wisconsin’s preliminary estimated unemployment rate for August 2005 is 4.3 percent compared to 4.6 percent in July and 4.5 percent in August 2004. The U.S unemployment rate in August is estimated at 4.9 percent. The number of Wisconsin residents estimated to be unemployed in August was 130,208. That is down 10,301 from last year’s August figure, and down about 10,400 from the July 2005 figure. Wisconsin’s labor force is also down from last year’s figures, which may be a reflection of the difficulty some employers are expressing in finding workers.

Unemployment statistics are based on labor market activities during the week of the 12PthP of the month.

Nonfarm wage and salary jobs are reported at 2,849,400 in August, which is up 2,800 from the July figure and up 16,700 from last year’s August figure. Most industries showed very little over-the-month change, although trade was up 1,900 jobs, professional and business services was up 2,900 jobs and leisure and hospitality was up 3,900 jobs. The job gains were largely offset by losses in the government sector, where jobs dropped off 3,900 from July’s figure.

Over-the-year job gains were experienced in most industries with the exception of manufacturing, which lost 2,300 jobs from last year and the government sector, which was down 1,400 jobs from last year. Trade was off 300 jobs, but wholesale trade was up 3,000 jobs while retail trade was off 3,300 jobs. Noteworthy gains were seen in construction – up 6,700 jobs from last year, professional and business services – up 5,500 jobs from last year, education and health services – up 4,200 jobs from last year, and leisure and hospitality – up 3,800 jobs from last year.

August employment and unemployment figures for individual counties will be available September 21, 2005. This release also is available at http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/dwd/newsreleases/.