1

State unemployment rate steady; Missoula County ticks up .1 percent to 3.5

Montana’s unemployment rate remained steady at 4.0 percent through November while the rate in Missoula ticked up one-tenth of one percent to 3.5, according to figures released Friday.

Current employment in Missoula County saw a decrease of 75 jobs over this time last year, though 60,258 people are currently employed in the local work force.

“Montana workers and families are heading into the holidays with a strong economy driving growth in local communities across the state,” Gov. Steve Bullock said. “Our wage growth continues to outpace inflation and businesses are hiring for good-paying jobs, making job opportunities plentiful.”

According to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, payroll job levels remained steady over the month of November. The state added a few hundred jobs in the private sector, offset by losses in government jobs.

Over the last three months, the state has added roughly 1,400 payroll jobs. Total employment, including payroll jobs, the self-employed and agricultural workers, remained fairly level over the month on a seasonally adjusted basis.

Based on the data, the state said, Montana is expected to finish 2017 with employment growth of .8 percent and wage growth nearly double that of last year.

Unemployment in Ravalli County stands at 4.5 percent, while the rate in Sanders County stands at 7.2 percent.