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Utah's Employment Rate Floats at the Ceiling While Jobless Rate Climbs

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

The Utah Department of Workforce Services released its employment numbers for August on Friday. They’re up by an estimated 4.0%, adding nearly 53,000 nonfarm payroll jobs compared to August a year ago. That’s nearly twice the national average growth rate for the same period. Carrie Mayne is the Chief Economist with the Utah Department of Workforce Services.  She says there’s strong growth across diverse industries but the highest job growth was in leisure and hospitality at 7.9% with education in second place.

“Education and health services has grown five and a half percent," says Mayne, "That’s an addition of 9,400 jobs, so almost 10,000 more jobs in this same time one year ago.”

Mayne says she’s not surprised to see small movements in the numbers from one month to the next as Utah’s economy is still operating at full employment.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports Utah’s August seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate rose one-tenth of a percent from last month to 3.7%. An estimated 53,600 Utahns were unemployed in the month and actively seeking work. The August national unemployment rate dropped 0.2 of a percent from July to 5.1 %.

Bob Nelson is a graduate of the University of Utah with a BA in mass communications. He began his radio career at KUER in 1978 when it was still in Kingsbury Hall. That’s also where he met his wife, Maria Shilaos, in 1981. Bob left KUER for commercial radio where he worked for 25 years, and he is thrilled to be back at KUER. Bob and his family are part of an explorer group, fondly known as The Hordes and Masses, which has been seeking out ghost towns and little-known places in Utah for more than twenty years.
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