3 Percent

15 Oct 2018

MN's unemployment rate has been at or below 4 percent for four years straight

Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to its lowest level since June 2000 – 3 percent. Our unemployment rate has been at or below 4 percent for four consecutive years. (The US unemployment rate in July was 3.9 percent.)

Employers added 11,200 jobs in July and 31,800 jobs over the past three months, the third-highest number of new jobs over a three-month span dating back to 1990.


  • Monthly gains across the major sectors were widespread; only two sectors lost jobs. The largest job gains were in education & health care (up 2,900), government (up 2,400), trade, transportation & utilities (+2,200), manufacturing (+1,500), and professional & business services (+1,400). Smaller gains occurred in construction (+500), leisure & hospitality (+400), and information (+200). Small losses came in other services (down 200) and logging & mining (down 100). Financial activities was steady.
  • Annual job growth by major industry sector looked much better in most areas due to July’s strong numbers.  Leisure & hospitality led all sectors both in terms of number of jobs added and employment growth rate – and set all-time highs dating back to 1991. The number of sectors shedding jobs over the year fell from 3 to 2 as logging & mining managed a slight 21 job increase, leaving financial activities and other services as the two remaining losers.  Construction and manufacturing also stand out, along with leisure & hospitality, as sectors with annual growth far in excess of the overall rate of 2.0%. The 9,441 additional manufacturing jobs is a new post-recessionary high for the industry.
  • The private sector average work week increased to 34.4 hours in July, matching the work week for last July, while the private sector average wage rate rose by 26 cents to $29.03. Since the previous July, private sector wages have increased by 61 cents or 2.1%, well short of the 2.9% increase in the Consumer Price Index over the same time period.

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