Idaho's Unemployment Below 5 Percent For First Time in 6 Years



New statistics released Friday by the Idaho Department of Labor paint a picture of Idaho's unemployment rate in steady recovery.

In May, Idaho's jobless rate dipped to 4.9 percent. That's a .1 percent decrease from the month before, and a 1.5 percent decrease from May 2013. Currently, the state's labor force participation rate for persons over age 15 is 63.8 percent, and job generation across the state took 1,000 workers off the unemployment rolls.

Total employment jumped 1,000 jobs between April and May, bringing the total number of employed persons in the state to 741,000—the ninth record in nine months. That's 15,000 more employed people this May than May 2013. Since January, Idaho has added 29,000 jobs.

Four counties, including Jefferson, Jerome, Owyhee and Power, experienced increases in their jobless rates from April to May. Clearwater County is the only county with a double-digit percentage unemployment rate at 10 percent. 

Ada County's unemployment rate dropped .1 percent from April to May, from 4.3 percent to 4.2 percent. That's 1.5 percent lower than May 2013. But the Boise-Nampa Metropolitan Statistical Area's unemployment rate was higher, at 4.6 percent—a .2 percent drop from April and a .6 percent decrease from May 2013.

Boise's unemployment rate dropped .1 percent, from 4.4 percent in April to 4.3 percent in May—also a 1.5 percent decrease from May 2013.


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