November 8, 2016

Carroll County, which has long posted the lowest unemployment figures in the region, lost that status in September to Greene County.

According to Iowa Workforce Development, Greene County recorded an unemployment rate of 2.8 percent to Carroll County’s 3 percent.

Sac and Shelby counties recorded unemployment rates of 2.9 percent.

All four rates are low nationally and present something of a mixed bag for local businesses and economic development. Jobs are available, but they are increasingly harder to fill.

Unemployment rates in other area counties for September were as follows: Audubon, 3.3 percent; Boone, 2.9 percent; Calhoun, 4.1 percent; Crawford, 4.9 percent; Dallas, 2.9 percent; Guthrie, 3.5 percent; and Webster, 3.5 percent.

Iowa’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 4.2 percent in September. The state’s jobless rate was 3.6 percent one year ago. The U.S. unemployment rate increased slightly to 5 percent in September.

“Due to an increase in the number of Iowans participating in the workforce, Iowa’s unemployment rate held steady at 4.2 percent in September,” said Beth Townsend, director of Iowa Workforce Development.  “The fact that the additional workers could find jobs is a good sign regarding the state of Iowa’s economy despite the recent uptick in the unemployment rate in the past few months.”

The number of unemployed Iowans decreased to 72,500 in September from 72,800 in August. The current estimate is 11,800 higher than the year ago level of 60,700.

The total number of working Iowans increased to 1,650,200 in September. This figure was 8,200 higher than August and 9,600 higher than one year ago.  

The Western Iowa Advantage Region’s monthly unemployment rate increased to 3.4 percent in September 2016 from 2.8 percent in September 2015, according to the figures released from Iowa Workforce Development.

Total employment in the region decreased to 39,900 in September 2016 from 47,716 in September 2015.

Western Iowa Advantage tracks various economic indicators in Adair, Audubon, Carroll, Crawford, Guthrie, Greene and Sac counties in Iowa, including employment trends.