The unemployment rate in Pine County fell to 3.2% in September, according to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED).
However, unemployment is higher than where it was in September 2018, when it hit a record-low 2.6%.
DEED data shows that unemployment in Pine County traditionally rises in winter and early spring, then heads back downwards.
Since that record 2.6% unemployment rate in September 2018, the jobless rate rose to 3.1%in October 2018 (still the second-lowest all-time unemployment rate in Pine County since records were first kept in 1990 by DEED). Unemployment kept rising from that point, hitting a high of 9.4% in January 2019 before falling to 8.3% in February 2019.
The March 2019 rate was also 8.3%, but unemployment fell to 6.5% in April 2019 and 4.2% in May 2019. It rose slightly to 4.3% in June 2019, stayed at 4.3% in July 2019, and then dropped to 3.8% in August 2019 and 3.2% in September 2019.
How did Pine County unemployment in September 2019 stack up to surrounding counties? It was lower in Chisago County (2.5%), Carlton County (3.1%) and Isanti County 2.7%) and Kanabec County (2.7 percent). It was higher only in Aitkin County (3.3%).
The highest-ever recorded Pine County unemployment rate was 16.4% in February 1991.
Pine County had a labor force of 14,910 with 14,435 employed and 475 unemployed in September 2019.
Minnesota and U.S.
DEED reported that Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.2% in September 2019 from 3.3% in August 2019.
The September 2019 unemployment rate in the United States as a whole stood at 3.5%, down from 3.7% in August 2019.
According to DEED, in Minnesota, four sectors gained jobs, six shed jobs and one held constant in September. The largest gains were in Trade, Transportation & Utilities, up 2,700 jobs and Financial Activities, up 1,300 jobs. Manufacturing and Leisure & Hospitality added 700 jobs each during the month.
Sectors losing jobs over the month included Education & Health Services, down 2,400 jobs, Professional & Business Services, down 900 jobs and Information, down 800 jobs over the month.