Missoula’s unemployment rate at 3 percent

Missoula Current

The unemployment rate in Missoula County remained a 3 percent in September, marking a 0.1 percent decrease over the past year, the Montana Department of Labor and Industry said.

Figures released last week by DOR reported 60,372 employed workers in Missoula County, which added 167 jobs over the past year.

The county’s unemployment rate was lower than the state as a whole. Montana’s unemployment rate remained at 4.3 percent in September. The national unemployment rate increased by 0.1 percentage points last month – up to 5 percent.

“Montana’s unemployment rate continues to be in the ideal range, and the state is seeing a growing workforce,” said Montana Labor & Industry Commissioner Pam Bucy. “Unemployment in the ideal range provides an even balance between workers having good job opportunities with increasing wages and businesses able to find the workers they need to produce their products.”

Statewide payroll employment estimates indicate over-the-month job growth of 2,400 jobs. Total employment estimates indicated a smaller over-the-month gain of roughly 100 jobs.

The unemployment rate in Ravalli County is currently 3.9 percent, with 18,601 employed workers. The unemployment rate in Sanders County was 6.4 percent in September. That county reported a loss of 104 jobs over the past year.

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased in August by 0.3 percent, led by price increases for gasoline and housing, the state also reported.

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U rose 1.5 percent before a seasonal adjustment. Core inflation, measured by all items less food and energy, rose 0.1 percent over the month of September.