New Jobs, Unemployment Both Increased in July
People reporting they were employed or that they were job searching both dropped.
Wisconsin employers added nearly 10,000 jobs in July, the state labor department reported Thursday, continuing job growth that has been steady for six out of the seven months of 2022.
At the same time, however, “we didn’t see the normal pop we get in June and July in the workforce,” said Dennis Winters, chief labor economist for the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) at a briefing on the state’s employment picture.
The result led to a slight uptick in the state’s unemployment rate to 3%, still a near-record low, Winters said. He called it “fairly slight in the scheme of things,” with both the number of unemployed people and the unemployment rate still low.
The number of jobs in the state is calculated from a monthly survey of employers, and may double-count individuals who have more than one job.
The report for employment, unemployment and labor force participation gets its data from a survey of households. Individuals are counted once, regardless of how many jobs they have.
Both sets of data are adjusted to account for fluctuations related to the season — when the labor force expands in the summer as students swarm into the job market, for example.
Half of July’s gain of 10,000 jobs were in hotels, restaurants and related businesses, which added 5,100 positions. The construction industry added 2,900 jobs, bringing the sector’s total employment to 132,900, “which is a new high for the state and historical high for the state construction industry,” Winters said.
The larger long-term challenge is the aging of Wisconsin’s workforce overall. “This is true across every occupation, in all geographies,” Winters said. “There’s a need to stay focused, to tap into our unutilized populations — ones that have barriers to entry.”
Those barriers can include transportation from home to work, finding housing in the same area where jobs are, resources for child care and care for other dependents, and matching skills with the jobs that are available, he added.
State’s jobs numbers, unemployment are both up, although not by much was originally published by the Wisconsin Examiner.