Wyoming Jobless Rate Hits 5.7 Percent In June
While that's only a slight increase from the state's May jobless rate of 5.6 percent, the latest figures do show a statewide 1.5 percent jump from the June 2015 rate of 4.2 percent.
The latest numbers for Wyoming are also considerably higher than the national unemployment rate of 4.9 percent last month. The news was even worse for some counties where the energy industry is particularly important.
Both Natrona and Campbell counties had jobless rates of 7.8 percent last month, the highest in the state. They were followed by Fremont County (7,2 percent) and Converse and Sweetwater counties (6.8 percent) for the highest unemployment rate in the state.
The lowest Wyoming jobless rates last month were found in Teton County (2.6 percent), Niobrara County (3.4 percent) and Goshen County (3.7 percent).
Senior State Economist David Bullard says Teton County is the only one in the state to have a lower jobless rate last month (2.6 percent) than in June of 2015 (2.9 percent). Bullard says those numbers reflect the fact that Teton County's economy is largely related to tourism, which is doing very well right now, as opposed to the energy industries that continue to struggle.
But even some of the less energy-dependent counties in the state saw significant jobless rate increases last month. Albany County had the largest increase in unemployment in the state between May and June (2.9 percent to 4 percent). Meanwhile the state's most populous county, Laramie County, saw its unemployment rate go up from 4 percent to 4.5 percent over that period.
Bullard says jobless increases between May and June aren't unusual as students get out of school and start looking for work.
While that might help explain some of the unemployment increases between May and June, it doesn't do the same for the year-over-year comparisons between June 2015 and last month.
Campbell County has seen it's unemployment rate jump 3.7 percent year-over-year, while Converse County's has gone up by 2.9 percent and unemployment in Natrona County is 2.7 percent higher than a year ago.