Dakota County Unemployment Rate Holds Steady

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Article By: Lakeville Patch   |   Scott Carlson


Dakota County posted a 5.8 percent seasonally-unadjusted jobless rate in January, the same rate during the same month a year earlier, according to data recently released by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.

The county's total workforce was 232,293 with 218,764 people employed and 13,529 unemployed.

Monte Hanson, a DEED spokesman, said, "Seasonally unadjusted unemployment numbers tend to jump in January and February (and March this year) because of cold weather (affecting construction and other outdoor jobs) and because of post-Christmas retail layoffs.

"The statewide numbers that come out every month are seasonally adjusted to account for that impact, but there isn’t a big enough survey sample at the county and city level to produce an accurate seasonally adjusted number," Hanson added. "Instead of comparing the change from December to January, a better approach with these numbers is to look year over year."

Earlier this month, DEED reported the state's seasonally-adjusted jobless rate rose to 5.6 percent in January from a revised 5.4 percent in December. However, Minnesota's jobless remained substantially below the U.S. unemployment rate in January of 7.9 percent.

One bit of good news: Minnesota employers added 12,000 jobs in January, DEED reported. The department also released revised figures from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics showing the state gained 16,700 more jobs over the previous 21 months than originally reported.

January’s job gains combined with the revised federal figures means the state has recovered nearly 90 percent of the 160,000 jobs that were lost during the Great Recession, with 50,000 jobs added over the past year, DEED said in a news release.

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