MADISON – The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) today released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary employment estimates for the month of February 2023, which showed Wisconsin’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to a record low of 2.7%.
In addition, total seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs increased 7,500 over the month of February and 50,300 year-over-year to hit a new record high of 2,997,400. The total jobs number puts the state 3,400 jobs above pre-COVID-19 peaks.
Wisconsin’s record low unemployment rate of 2.7% for February is down 0.2 percentage points from January’s rate of 2.9% and beats the previous record low of 2.8% set in January through April of 2022. The state’s labor force participation rate of 64.5% in February was unchanged from January. Nationwide for the month of February, the U.S. unemployment rate was 3.6% with a labor force participation rate of 62.5%.
- Place of Residence Data: As Wisconsin’s unemployment rate fell to 2.7% for February, the number of unemployed people declined by 5,100 over the month to 82,900, also a record low. The labor force regained some 2,100 workers.
- Place of Work Data: Over the month, Wisconsin added 7,500 nonfarm jobs, with gains of 7,000 service providing jobs, including 1,400 in the leisure and hospitality industry. Manufacturing gained 500 jobs over the month. Job losses occurred in information, financial activities, and professional and business services.
“Wisconsin is hard at work and February’s record low unemployment rate of 2.7% demonstrates the importance of workforce development efforts to equip job seekers with in-demand skills,” said DWD Secretary-designee Amy Pechacek. “Gov. Tony Evers’ 2023-25 proposed biennial budget aims to build on this momentum by removing employment barriers, advancing regional solutions, and encouraging career growth in health care and green careers. Through paid family and medical leave, the governor’s budget also will make Wisconsin more competitive when it comes to attracting and retaining talent.”
Today’s full report can be viewed on DWD’s premier source for labor market information, WisConomy.com.