Minnesota’s unemployment rate fell in November from October’s 4.6 percent. The change was due to more people starting jobs, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) reported.
Wilkin County is currently at a 3.1 percent unemployment rate, compared to the state’s 4.4 percent. The state is at a high unemployment rate compared to November 2019, where it was at 3.3 percent.
Minnesota’s unemployment rate is over 2 percent lower than the national average of 6.7 percent. In 2019, Minnesota’s unemployment rate was just above the national average.
“Minnesota lost jobs in November on a seasonally adjusted basis for the first time since April 2020 as virus cases ticked up, businesses anticipated further restrictions and winter weather hit earlier than usual,” DEED reported.
The state lost 12,600 jobs outside of farming in November. The loss in the job market nearly canceled out the progress made in October, when the state saw a gain of 15,200 jobs.
The field that lost the most jobs was leisure and hospitality, down 10,400 jobs from October. The field suffered the most job loss in 2020, according to DEED.
“Statewide, the Health Care & Social Assistance industry had the most job vacancies, followed by Retail Trade and Accommodation and Food Services,” DEED reported.
The pandemic highlighted the importance and influence of health care jobs in the state, DEED Commissioner Steve Grove said. Health care jobs’ contribution to the state’s economy was officially recognized by Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, who declared January “Health Care Month.”
"Health Care Month is an opportunity to highlight the economic impacts of the health care industry in our state. Health care jobs offer a career path to family-sustaining wages and economic security," Grove said. "Many entry-level health care jobs can be started with no previous experience and many employers provide on-the-job training, helping people considering a career move get on track for future career growth in the health care field."
There are currently 45,874 job vacancies located in Greater Minnesota, accounting for 41 percent of the total vacancies in the state.
“We can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but many Minnesota workers and businesses still have several tough months ahead while vaccinations are distributed and the pandemic is brought under control,” Grove said. “Bipartisan support for relief targeted to suffering Minnesota small businesses and unemployed workers means help is on the way. This assistance serves as a bridge to hold people over until the arrival of additional federal funding, which remains essential for economic recovery over the coming months.”