Northwoods Unemployment Remains Above Average

May 23, 2013

Jobless numbers remain at or near 10 percent for much of the Northwoods but a state economist says one trend could be improving news.

The Department of Workforce Development jobless numbers include April unemployment numbers of 14.1 percent in Iron county, second highest in the state. Vilas was third at 12.3 percent, Forest was sixth highest at 10.9 percent, Oneida county was ninth highest at 10.3 percent, Lincoln and Langlade counties had rates of 9.7 and 9.6 percent respectively.

Economist Tom Walsh in Wausau says the cold weather in April might have been a factor in slower-than-normal employment, but unemployment did go up...

"...we saw increased unemployment(in the Northwoods)'s very difficult to tell how much of it was due to the weather..."

Price still had the region's lowest rate at 7.4 percent.

Walsh did see one positive in lower initial unemployment claims..

"....the initial claims seem to be trending down, both for initial claims and over the last four weeks..."

Dane county had the state's lowest rate at 4.9 percent with Menominee county the highest at 15.6 percent.