Nebraska Jobless Rate Unchanged At 3.1% For 8th Straight Month

LINCOLN – Nebraska’s unemployment rate in December was 3.1%, the 6th straight month at that figure. The state Labor Dept says the preliminary December rate was 3-10ths of a point higher than the adjusted rate of 2.8% a year ago.

Omaha’s jobless rate was also unchanged last month at 2.7%, a tenth of a point better than a year ago, while the rate in Lincoln was 2.4%, up 2-tenths of a point from November and the same as last December.

Grand Island came in at 2.9%, up a tenth for the month and the same as a year ago, while the Scottsbluff micropolitan statistical area was at 3.5%, a tenth higher than November and 2-tenths higher than a year ago.

The state average is adjusted for seasonal factors while the local numbers are not, making comparisons between the two meaningless.

State Labor Commissioner John Albin says 2019 was full of historically high employment with last month’s non-famr employment of 1,042,933 marking the 10th straight month above a million.

The number of number of jobs did fail to increase from the previous month for the first in that streak, coming in a tenth of a point lower than in November.

Still, the state had over 15,600 more jobs than it did in December 2018. Private industry sectors with the most growth over the past 12 months were Leisure and Hospitality – up 3,801 – Professional and Business Services – up 3,475 – and Education and Health – up 3,176.

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