DWD: January unemployment rates announced

CONTACT: Dick Jones, Agency Liaison, 608-267-4780

On the Web: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/dwd/newsreleases/2008/unemployment/0108_state_lmi.pdf

Unadjusted Data

MADISON – Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Roberta Gassman announced today that Wisconsin’s unemployment rate for January was 5.5 percent. The rate last month was nine-tenths of a percentage point higher than the December rate of 4.6 percent and it matches the January 2007 rate of 5.5 percent. The national rate was 5.4 percent in January compared to 4.8 percent in December and 5.0 percent in January 2007.

“A combination of seasonal factors such as winter breaks in the education system, reductions in retail sales following the holiday shopping season and record or near record snowfall in many areas played a significant role in Wisconsin’s labor market in January,” Secretary Gassman said.

Total Wisconsin non-farm jobs decreased 81,100 from December 2007 to January 2008, to 2,814,900. Private sector jobs fell over-the-month by 66,100, led by a drop in retail trade, down 17,200 and construction, down 12,600. Government jobs dropped a combined 15,000 jobs over the month. Local and state government jobs decreased 9,600 and 5,400 respectively, while federal government was unchanged.

Over the year, January 2008 had an increase of 500 jobs over January 2007, which recorded 2,814,400 jobs. Private sector jobs decreased 3,500 over that time period, while government jobs increased 4,000, led by an increase in local government employment. Goods producers lost 15,400 jobs, led by a decrease in manufacturing of 10,600 for the year, while service producers added a total of 15,900 over the year, led by the educational and health services sector, which added 7,500.

Adjusted Data

The seasonally adjusted Wisconsin unemployment rate for January 2008 was 4.9 percent, unchanged from the final December 2007 rate and the January 2007 rate of 4.9 percent. 

Total state employment was down 7,500 from December 2007 to January 2008 and down 1,400 compared to one year ago.  

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