The Idaho Department of Labor reported this morning that the Gem State's December jobless rate—6.6 percent—fell to its lowest point in nearly four years.
In the past 17 months, the Idaho unemployment rate has dropped a full 2.3 percentage points.
In all, Idaho employers added more than 12,000 new jobs during December, up 12 percent over a year ago and the highest December hiring total since the recession began.
Only five rural counties—Adams, Benewah, Clearwater, Shoshone and Valley, all in northern or north-central Idaho—posted double-digit unemployment numbers in December. Twenty-one of Idaho's 44 counties reported jobless rates below 6 percent.
The Treasure Valley jobless rate dipped two-tenths of a percentage point to 6.2 percent, compared to 8.3 percent in December 2011.
The city of Boise's unemployment rate in December was 5.8 percent, down from 7.6 percent in December 2011.