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April 2016 Economic Situation Report

Governor Bullock Announces Montana’s Unemployment Rate is Down

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Friday, May 20, 2016

CONTACT:
Tim Crowe, Communications Director, Governor’s Office, 444-9844
Jake Troyer, Communications Director, Department of Labor & Industry, 444-1674
Barbara Wagner, Chief Economist, Department of Labor & Industry, 444-5474

Governor Bullock Announces Montana’s Unemployment Rate is Down

HELENA, MT – Montana’s unemployment rate decreased slightly in April, down one-tenth of a percentage point to 4.2%.  The U.S. unemployment held steady at 5.0%.

Montana’s economy continues to grow and diversify, creating new opportunities for our Montana businesses to succeed, expand, and hire more workers,” said Governor Bullock. “We must continue to ensure that those businesses have a pipeline of highly-trained, skilled Montanans to fill the good-paying jobs being created.

Payroll employment added 2,000 jobs in April, contributing to a total gain of 5,500 payroll jobs since the start of 2016.  Total employment estimates, which include agricultural and self-employed workers along with payroll workers, experienced a statistically insignificant decrease of 131 jobs while the number of unemployed people also experienced a decline of 471.

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose by 0.4% in April.  Energy prices rose by 3.4%, largely due to gas prices rising by 8.1%. The food index increased by 0.2% after decreasing in March. Core inflation, measured by the all items less food and energy index, rose 0.2% over the month. 

** Statewide unemployment figures are seasonally-adjusted.  Seasonally-adjusted numbers remove the effects of events that follow a more or less regular month-to-month pattern each year. These adjustments make nonseasonal patterns easier to identify. The margin of error for the unemployment rate is plus or minus 0.5 percentage points at the 90 percent confidence level. All questions relating to the calculation of unemployment rates should be directed to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry’s Research and Analysis Bureau at 1-800-541-3904.

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The next Labor Situation Report for the month of May 2016 will be released on Friday, June 17. 

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