St. Croix Co. Economic Development Corp.: April unemployment rate at 2.8 percent

On May 23rd, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) announced the preliminary April 2018 unemployment rates for Wisconsin’s 72 counties and the 32 cities with populations greater than 25,000 residents. St. Croix County’s rate was estimated at 2.8%. For comparison, St. Croix’s final rate for March was 3.3% and February’s final rate was 3.7%. One year ago, the county’s unemployment rate was estimated at 2.9%.

DWD said preliminary unemployment rates for April declined or stayed the same in 63 of the 72 counties when compared to April 2017. Forty-five (45) of the state’s 72 counties experienced or tied their lowest April unemployment rate on record in 2018. The rates ranged from 1.8% in Dane and Lafayette counties to 7.9% in Iron. 

The April 2018 preliminary unemployment rates decreased in all of Wisconsin’s 32 municipalities with population bases of least 25,000 residents when compared to April 2017. Nineteen (19) of the 32 largest municipalities experienced their lowest April unemployment rate on record in 2018. Rates ranged from 1.7% in Fitchburg to 4.1% in Racine. 

Dane and Lafayette counties had the lowest rate in April at 1.8% followed by Ozaukee (2.1%), Washington (also at 2.1%), and Calumet (2.2%). Iron County had the highest rate in April at 7.9%, followed by Menominee (6.8%), Bayfield (5.9%), Forest (5.7%), and Sawyer (5.4%). 

St. Croix, Pierce, Polk, and Dunn counties comprise Wisconsin’s Greater St. Croix Valley. In addition to St. Croix referenced above, April’s preliminary rate in Dunn was estimated at 2.9%, Pierce, also at 2.9%, and 4.1% for Polk. Except for Polk, the current rates are lower than the rates for April 2017.

St. Croix and Pierce counties are included in the 16-county Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington MN-WI metro area. The April 2018 unemployment rate for the Twin Cities was estimated at 2.7%, which is lower than the final rate of 3.3% for March and February’s final rate of 3.4%. The unemployment rate in the Twin Cities was 3.3% in April 2017. 

The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate for Wisconsin in April was estimated at 2.8%, which is lower than the final rate of 2.9% for both March and February. One year ago, the state’s seasonally adjusted rate was 3.3%.

The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate in Minnesota in April was estimated at 3.2%, which is the same as final rates for both March and February. Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted rate one year ago was 3.5%.

The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate in the U.S. for April was estimated at 3.9%, which is lower than final rate of 4.1% for both March and February. One year ago the U.S. rate (seasonally adjusted) was estimated at 4.4%. 

Wisconsin’s preliminary (seasonally adjusted) labor force participation rate for April 2018 was estimated at 68.9%, which is higher than the final rate of 68.7% for March and February’s final rate of  68.6%. One year ago, Wisconsin’s labor force participation rate was 68.6%. The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) labor force participation rate for the U.S. in April was estimated at 62.8%, which is lower than the final rate of 62.9% for March and February’s final rate of 63.0%. One year ago, the labor force participation rate in the U.S. was 62.9%. 

April’s estimates are preliminary and are subject to revision within the next few weeks. 

April 2018                                                     

County                       Unemployment Rate             Rank                           Rate One Year Ago

Barron                         3.6%                                        52 of 72                       3.6%

Chippewa                    3.4%                                        49 of 72                       3.3%

Clark                           3.0%                                        37 of 72                       3.0%

Dunn                           2.9%                                        33 of 72                       3.1%

Eau Claire                   2.2%                                        5 of 72                         2.6%

Pepin                           3.1%                                        39 of 72                       3.0%

Pierce                          2.9%                                        33 of 72                       3.2%

Polk                             4.1%                                        59 of 72                       3.9%

Rusk                            3.9%                                        53 of 72                       4.5%

St. Croix                      2.8%                                        28 of 72                       2.9%

Twin Cities Metro       2.7%                                        —                                3.3%

State of Wisconsin      2.8%*                                      —                                3.3%* 

State of Minnesota      3.2 %*                                     —                                3.5%*

United States              3.9%*                                      —                                4.4%* 

*Seasonally adjusted

Source: Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development; Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development; and St. Croix Economic Development Corp.


The 10 counties of west central and northwest Wisconsin comprise Momentum West, an external marketing and economic development organization;

The Twin Cities Metro Area is comprised of 16 counties (14 in Minnesota plus St. Croix and Pierce in Wisconsin)