Unemployment Lower Statewide, Higher In The North
Wisconsin's unemployment rate declined to a new record low of 2.8 percent in April.
Northwoods counties followed the trend, but still have higher levels of joblessness here than other parts of the state.
State Labor Economist Mitchell Rupp in Wausau says the rates fell in the region...
"...For you five-county area, all five counties saw decreases in the unemployment rate from the previous month as well as the previous year. The unemployment rates for the month of April: Forest 5.3, Langlade 3.4, Lincoln 3.3. Oneida 4.1, Vilas 4.7..."
Price county is at 3.6. Iron county is at 6.2. Iron County's unemployment rate declined by 2.4 percent, the largest over the year decline among Wisconsin counties. Still, Iron county's rate is the second highest in the state.
All counties in the region saw unemployment slightly lower this year compared to last. Oneida county's rate is likely to rise after the closing of most of the Foster & Smith facility and Shopko store in Rhinelander. Tomahawk in Lincoln county also has a Shopko store that will be closing.
Economists often note that statistically an unemployment rate at four percent or below is considered full employment. In April, 61 counties in Wisconsin were at 4 percent or below. Of the 11 counties above 4 percent, Oneida, Vilas, Forest and Iron counties are in that category.
Dane county's rate is the lowest rate in the state at 1.9 percent.