The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose from 4.0% in February to 4.1% in March (not a statistically significant change). Wyoming's unemployment rate was slightly lower than its level of 4.2% and significantly lower than the current U.S. unemployment rate of 5.5%. Seasonally adjusted employment of Wyoming residents increased very slightly, rising by an estimated 439 individuals (0.1%) from February to March.
From February to March, most county unemployment rates increased. A contributing factor to the rising unemployment rates was job losses in the oil & gas sector as evidenced by claims for unemployment insurance. The largest unemployment rate increases were seen in Big Horn (up from 5.0% to 5.7%), Natrona (up from 4.4% to 5.0%), Converse (up from 3.6% to 4.0%), and Uinta (up from 5.3% to 5.7%) counties. Unemployment rates fell in Niobrara (down from 3.3% to 3.0%), Platte (down from 4.7% to 4.5%), Sheridan (down from 5.2% to 5.1%), Lincoln (down from 6.3% to 6.2%), and Crook (down from 4.5% to 4.4%) counties.
From March 2014 to March 2015, unemployment rates rose in 12 counties and fell in 10 counties. Big Horn County's unemployment rate was unchanged from a year earlier at 5.7%. The largest increases occurred in in Converse (up from 3.3% to 4.0%), Sublette (up from 5.2% to 5.9%), Sweetwater (up from 4.4% to 5.1%), and Weston (up from 3.5% to 4.1%) counties. The largest decreases were seen in Teton (down from 4.6% to 3.9%), Niobrara (down from 3.7% to 3.0%), Sheridan (down from 5.6% to 5.1%), and Goshen (down from 4.1% to 3.6%) counties.
Fremont and Lincoln counties reported the highest unemployment rates in March (both 6.2%). They were followed by Johnson (6.1%) and Sublette (5.9%) counties. The lowest unemployment rates were found in Niobrara (3.0%), Albany (3.5%), and Goshen (3.6%) counties.
Total nonfarm employment (measured by place of work) rose from 284,400 in to 287,300 in , a gain of 2,900 jobs (1.0%).
Research & Planning has scheduled the April employment news release for .