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Montana’s Unemployment Rate continues down to 4.2 percent

Tuesday, January 27, 2015/Categories: Department of Labor and Industry, Unemployment Insurance Division, Governor's Office/Tags: Unemployment Rate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2015

CONTACT:
Mike Wessler, Governor’s Office, 444-9725
Annie Glover, Communications Director, Department of Labor & Industry, 444-1654
Barbara Wagner, Chief Economist, Department of Labor & Industry, 444-5474

HELENA – Montana’s unemployment rate continued its decline in December, down 0.1 percentage points to 4.2 percent. The unemployment rate has decreased by over a full percentage point during 2014. The U.S. unemployment rate declined to 5.6 percent. The U.S. unemployment rate remains over a point above Montana’s rate, but has also decreased by over a full percentage point over the year.

“Montana finished 2014 with more employment growth, which will likely put the year into the history books as one of the strongest years for our economy,” Governor Steve Bullock said, “With our state’s strong economy, I remain committed to building on that strength to ensure that all Montanans feel the benefits of this growing prosperity.”

“Montana’s economy is continuing its momentum and promising a good year in 2015” said Labor Commissioner Pam Bucy. “Although we continue to monitor economic performance for any negative impacts from falling oil prices, employment growth in all other industries continues unabated. We will continue to work with businesses to recruit and develop good workers in this low unemployment environment.”

Montana’s total employment levels increased by 829 jobs over the last month, with 12,663 jobs added since last December. These preliminary numbers indicate strong job growth of 2.6 percent in 2014, placing the year in the top quartile for employment growth since 1980. Total employment estimates include payroll employment, plus agricultural and self-employed workers. Payroll employment estimates indicate a gain of 3,100 jobs over the month, with large gains in the construction industry.

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) fell sharply by 0.4 percent in December due to a drop in oil and fuel prices. The gasoline index declined 9.4 percent over the month. The index for all items less food and energy, also called core inflation, was unchanged over the month.

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** Unemployment figures are seasonally-adjusted. Seasonally-adjusted numbers remove the effects of events that follow a more or less regular month-to-month pattern each year. These adjustments make nonseasonal patterns easier to identify. The margin of error for the unemployment rate is plus or minus 0.8 percentage points at the 90 percent confidence level. All questions relating to the calculation of unemployment rates should be directed to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry’s Research and Analysis Bureau at 1-800-541-3904.

The next Labor Situation Report for the month of January 2015 will be released on Tuesday, March 17, 2015. Per usual, the unemployment rate release for January is issued later than other months due to the annual benchmarking process to improve estimate accuracy, completed during February. Updated, more accurate, estimates for 2014 will also be issued in March.

****** INFORMATION AVAILABLE ON THE INTERNET ******

Visit our website at www.lmi.mt.gov for additional information and analysis, including industry employment levels, background on the unemployment rate, and annual employment data for Montana’s Indian Reservations. This month’s Economy at a Glance article features information on people moving to Montana.

****** COUNTY UNEMPLOYMENT RATES ******

The unemployment rate and ranking for each of Montana’s 56 counties is provided below for your convenience. County unemployment rates and employment levels are not seasonally adjusted and should be compared to the unadjusted statewide unemployment rate of 4.3 percent.

Rank County Unemployment Rate Employement
Current Unemployment Rate Change over Year Current Employment Job Change from Last Year
1 Fallon County 1.7 0 2,091 36
 2  Richland County 1.8 -0.3 7,601 473
 3 Sweet Grass County 2.2 -0.4 2,312 -56
4 McCone County 2.3 -0.5 1,015 -49
Wibaux County 2.3 -108 541 0
6 Dawson County 2.4 -0.5 4,532 96
6 Sheridan County 2.4 -1.2 2,033 18
8 Carter County 2.9 -0.1 659 16
9 Powder River County 3 -0.3 882 -152
9 Yellowstone County 3 -1 83,233 2,833
 11 Valley County 3.1 -0.5 3,897 40
12 Chouteau County 3.2 -0.1 2,323 -141
12 Gallatin County 3.2 -1 53,061 3,228
12 Toole County 3.2 -0.6 2,358 74
 15 Custer County 3.3 -0.3 6,284 185
16 Judith Basin County 3.4 -0.2 1,038 -92
16 Musselshell County 3.4 -1 2,357 -1
18 Carbon County 3.5 -0.8 5,237 178
18 Lewis and Clark County 3.5 -0.9 33,509 1,409
20 Beaverhead County 3.6 -0.3 4,750 -211
21 Cascade County 3.7 -1 39,850 662
21 Garfield County 3.7 -0.4 551 -60
21 Wheatland County 3.7 -1.2 894 -143
24 Stillwater County 3.8 -0.6 4,480 26
24 Teton County 3.8 -0.3 2,744 -174
26 Jefferson County 3.9 -1.4 5,579 235
26 Madison County 3.9 -1 4,343 3
28 Missoula County 4 -1.1 59,521 2,390
29 Daniels County 4.1 -0.1 734 19
29 Prairie County 4.1 -0.5 496 -47
31 Treasure County 4.3 0.9 308 -140
32 Golden Valley County 4.4 -0.1 481 -33
32 Hill County 4.4 -2.2 7,677 46
32 Meagher County 4.4 -0.5 806 -139
32 Silver Bow County 4.4 -0.9 16,768 209
36 Fergus County 4.5 -1.2 5,445 -74
36 Liberty County 4.5 0.1 661 -95
38 Pondera County 4.8 -0.6 2,294 -145
39 Blaine County 4.9 -0.2 2,525 -48
40 Phillips County 5.1 -0.3 1,865 -189
41 Park County 5.2 -1.4 7,886 89
41 Roosevelt County 5.2 -1.2 4,212 149
43 Deer Lodge County 5.3 -1.7 3,805 160
44 Broadwater County 5.4 -2.3 2,147 -38
45 Powell County 5.5 -1.4 2,622 92
45 Rosebud County 5.5 -1.4 3,527 -17
47 Ravalli County 6 -1.4 16,662 146
48 Lake County 6.1 -1.6 10,217 17
49 Flathead County 6.2 -1.4 41,469 1,748
50 Petroleum County 7.5 0 210 -12
51 Granite County 7.8 -1.3 1,152 -68
52 Big Horn County 8.5 -4.9 4,644 52
53 Mineral County 9.8 -0.6 1,731 61
54 Glacier County 10.5 -0.7 4,946 -39
55 Sanders County 10.8 -2.8 3,477 -6
56 Lincoln County 11.5 -4 6,411 233

 

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