Idaho’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate fell for the third consecutive month in May to 3.2 percent, underscoring the increased pressure among Idaho employers competing for workers, according to Idaho Labor Department officials.
Department analysts said May’s unemployment drop is the result of 2,200 Idahoans exiting the workforce and/or ending their work search. Total employment dropped by 1,250 -- while the total number of unemployed fell by 950.
May estimates show Idaho’s total non-farm payroll jobs decreased by two-tenths of a percent in May, down 1,200 to 708,800. Six of the state’s eleven industry sectors showed job declines including construction, as well as trade, transportation and utilities. Only three sectors showed job gains -- professional and business services increased by 1,200 jobs, and education and health services and other services both grew by 200. Natural resources and government jobs were unchanged from April.
Analysts added Idaho’s labor force still showed growth, up 8,600 over May of last year. Non-farm payroll jobs were up 2.4 percent, with a net gain of 16,800 jobs. Education and health services showed the largest annual job growth, up 4.8 percent.
Strong job gains also occurred in construction, government services, leisure and hospitality, and manufacturing.
Retail jobs were down slightly.