CONTACT: Chris Marschman, Communications Specialist, 608-261-6705
MADISON – Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Roberta Gassman today released August 2009 local unemployment rate estimates for Wisconsin cities, counties, and metropolitan areas.
“August labor market statistics show all metro areas and all but three counties with decreases in their unemployment rates,” Secretary Gassman said. “We see encouraging signs that the economy is improving as we work with our partners to help the unemployed and all job seekers, connecting them with employers to keep the economy going forward.”
Unemployment rates decreased in all of the state’s 12 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) in August compared to July. When compared to rates of August 2008, all 12 MSAs had higher unemployment rates last month. The Madison MSA had the lowest rate in August at 5.9 percent. The Janesville MSA recorded the highest rate at 12.0 percent.
Preliminary figures for nonfarm wage and salary jobs showed a decrease in 6 of the 11 reporting areas, while 4 recorded in increase in jobs and 1 saw no change over the month. Compared to last year, all 11 areas recorded job losses in August.
In July, unemployment rates decreased in 69 of 72 Wisconsin counties, increased in two, and remained the same in one. Dane County recorded the lowest rate at 5.8 percent, followed by Pepin at 6.0 percent. The highest rates were recorded in Menominee County at 17.8 percent, and Rock County at 12.0 percent.
On an annual basis, unemployment rates increased in all 72 counties. The smallest increase occurred in Bayfield, which recorded a 1.8 percentage point increase. The biggest increase occurred in Lincoln County, where the unemployment rate increased 6.3 percentage points over August 2008.
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