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January unemployment rates higher in St. Croix than one year ago

Downtown Hudson. File photo

On March 13, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) announced the preliminary January 2019 unemployment rates for Wisconsin's 72 counties and the 32 cities with populations greater than 25,000 residents. St. Croix County's rate was estimated at 4.0 percent. For comparison, St. Croix's final rate for December was 2.8 percent and November's final rate was 2.6 percent. One year ago, the county's unemployment rate was estimated at 3.6 percent.

DWD said preliminary unemployment rates for January declined or remained the same in 18 of the 72 counties when compared to January 2018. The rates ranged from 2.4 percent in Dane County to 6.8 percent in Adams.

The January 2019 preliminary unemployment rates declined or stayed the same in 19 of Wisconsin's 32 largest municipalities. Rates ranged from 2.3 percent in Madison to 4.3 percent in Beloit.

The five counties with the lowest unemployment rate in January include Dane (2.4 percent), Ozaukee (2.7 percent), Sheboygan (also at 2.7 percent), Calumet (2.8 percent), and Winnebago (also at 2.8 percent). Adams County had the highest rate in January at 6.8 percent, followed by Burnett (6.7 percent), Bayfield (6.6 percent), Forest (6.3 percent), and Iron (5.8 percent).

St. Croix, Pierce, Polk, and Dunn counties comprise Wisconsin's Greater St. Croix Valley. In addition to St. Croix's rate of 4.0 percent, January's preliminary rate in Dunn was estimated at 4.1 percent, followed by Pierce also at 4.1 percent and Polk at 5.7 percent.

St. Croix and Pierce counties are included in the 16-county Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington MN-WI metro area. The January 2019 unemployment rate for the Twin Cities was estimated at 3.6 percent, which is higher than December's final rate of 2.8 percent and November's final rate of 2.0 percent. The unemployment rate in the Twin Cities was 3.4 percent in January 2018.

For the 12th consecutive month, the preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate for Wisconsin was at or below 3.0 percent. For January, the rate was estimated at 3.0 percent, which is the same as the final rates for both December and November. One year ago, the state's seasonally adjusted rate was 2.9 percent.

The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate in Minnesota in January was estimated at 3.0 percent, which is higher than the final rate of 2.9 percent for both December and November. Minnesota's seasonally-adjusted rate one year ago was 3.1 percent.

The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate in the U.S. for January was estimated at 4.0 percent, which is higher than December's final rate of 3.0 percent but lower than November's final rate of 4.1 percent. One year ago, the U.S. rate (seasonally adjusted) was estimated at 4.1 percent.

Wisconsin's preliminary (seasonally adjusted) labor force participation rate for January was estimated at 67.6 percent, which is higher than December's final rate of 67.5 percent but lower than November's final rate of 68.4 percent. One year ago, Wisconsin's labor force participation rate was 68.5 percent. The preliminary (seasonally adjusted) labor force participation rate for the U.S. in January was estimated at 63.2 percent, which is higher than the final rate of 63.1 percent in December and 62.9 percent for November. One year ago, the labor force participation rate in the U.S. was 62.7 percent.

January's estimates are preliminary and are subject to revision within the next few weeks.