By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily
Wyoming’s unemployment rate more than doubled in April, growing from 3.8% in March to 9.2%, with more than 15,000 workers losing their jobs due largely to the coronavirus pandemic.
The state Department of Workforce Services, in its monthly report on the state’s unemployment rate, said 28,208 members of the state’s workforce of 294,311 were without work in April, compared to 12,754 in March and 9,980 in April of 2019.
“Given the large number of layoffs and other economic disruptions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the increase in unemployment was widely expected,” the report said.
The number of unemployed workers in April was a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 9.2%, well below the national average of 14.7%, which was more than triple the unemployment rate of 4.4% seen in March.
The Department of Workforce Services said the downturn was felt by every major industry in the state.
“Job losses were seen across all areas of the state and in every major industry, with the hardest hit sectors being leisure and hospitality, natural resources and mining and retail trade,” the report said.
Every county saw increases in unemployment, the report said, with Teton County’s rate growing from 4% in March to 18.3%, the highest unemployment rate in the state. The lowest rate was found in Niobrara County at 4.4%, followed by Albany County at 5.4%.