Nebraska Unemployment Rate Unchanged For 7th Straight Month At 2.5%


       Nebraska’s preliminary unemployment rate was unchanged for the 7th straight month in April at 2.5%.

The seasonally-adjusted rate is half-a point higher than a year ago, but still the 4th-lowest in the nation.

     The April jobless rate was lower than in March but higher than a year ago for Nebraska’s three metropolitan centers.

     Omaha’s rate of  2.6% in April was 2-tenths of a point lower than March and 4-10ths higher than last year while the 2.1% rate for Lincoln was also 2-tenths lower for the month but 3-10ths above last year.

       Grand Island came in at 2.2%, down 3-tenths of a point from March and up 3-tenths from a year ago. The Scottsbluff micropolitan statistical area was at 3% last month, down a tenth from March but a full half-point higher than last year.

     State figures are adjusted for seasonal factors while local numbers are not, making comparisons of the two meaningless.

     State Labor Commissioner John Albin says the April numbers look even better when you realize Nebraska’s nonfarm employment – a count of filled jobs – reached an all-time high in April at 1,063,738 jobs.

      Albin says it “was driven by record highs in Omaha and Lincoln of 516,399 and 198,570, respectively.” Nonfarm employment was up 7,102 from March and 18,816 from April of last year. 

    Private industry sectors with the most growth month to month were mining and construction (up 2,097 jobs); leisure and hospitality services (up 1,968 jobs); and trade, transportation, and utilities (up 920 jobs).  

    Those with the most growth over the past 12 months were private education and health services (up 6,643 jobs); trade, transportation, and utilities (up 4,381 jobs); and leisure and hospitality services (up 3,316 jobs).

       The seasonally adjusted national unemployment rate for April is 3.9%, a tenth of a point than in March and up half-a-point from April of last year.