Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce: New Jobs Numbers Show Wisconsin is Moving Forward

Nick Novak, 608.258.3400

MADISON – Gov. Scott Walker and the Department of Workforce Development announced on Thursday that Wisconsin’s unemployment rate has dropped once again to 3.4 percent in March – the lowest it has been since April 2000.

Also noted was that the labor force participation rate increased to 68.4 percent, more than five points higher than the national average. And, Wisconsin is among the top ten states for manufacturing jobs since Walker took office in 2011.

WMC President/CEO Kurt R. Bauer released the following statement after the new jobs numbers were announced:

“Wisconsin just continues to improve every single day. The state’s unemployment rate is at historic lows. Our labor force participation rate is well above the national average. And, our state is leading the way when it comes to manufacturing jobs. There is no doubt that the policies put in place the last six years have led to this momentous economic comeback.

“In particular, the manufacturing and agriculture tax credit has proved to be a boon for manufacturing jobs, but also jobs in other industries. A recent study from the University of Wisconsin-Madison shows that manufacturing job growth grew at a rate two percent faster than if the credit did not exist. In plain numbers, that is an additional 20,000 Wisconsinites who get to wake up each morning knowing they have a career that can support their family. Additionally, more than 20,000 jobs were created in other industries because of the credit, according to the study.

“We commend the governor and the legislature for taking the lead on pro-growth reforms that have made Wisconsin an even better place to live, work and raise a family. We must turn our eyes to Wisconsin’s labor shortage, however. The fact is, Wisconsin could be adding even more jobs if we had the workers to fill them.

“Wisconsin needs to market its great career and lifestyle opportunities to people living in other states – especially ones like Illinois where the economic outlook is far from positive. Our state cannot prosper long term if we continue to be the best kept secret in the Midwest. We need to tell our story.”