Minnesota down 3,100 jobs in August, unemployment rate at 1.9%

A "now hiring" sign is posted in Garnet Valley, Pa., Monday, May 10, 2021.  Applications for...
A "now hiring" sign is posted in Garnet Valley, Pa., Monday, May 10, 2021. Applications for unemployment benefits inched down last week, Thursday, April 21, 2022, as the total number of Americans collecting aid fell to its lowest level in more than 50 years.(Matt Rourke | AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
Published: Sep. 15, 2022 at 8:55 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 15, 2022 at 9:00 PM CDT
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MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - Minnesota’s unemployment rate rose by 0.1% in August, according to numbers from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.

This follows last month, which saw the lowest unemployment rate since the beginning of data tracking. But, according to Ryan Vesey, this is less than ideal because you need some of that unemployment to create job growth.

“Four percent unemployment is considered full employment,” said Ryan Vesey, economic development and research manager at Greater Mankato Growth. “That means that at a broad stroke, everyone who is looking for a job can find one. Even in that, there are individual populations that find it more difficult to find jobs than others, but four percent means, at a broad stroke, everyone who’s searching can find a job that’s considered the natural churn between jobs, so two percent and anything lower than two percent is considered incredibly low.”

In the Mankato area, we’ve seen a 6.3% employment growth, the largest growth in the state, despite the state’s 0.1% decline.

“Again, I think because we’re not seeing massive lay-offs by Minnesota companies or seeing our unemployment numbers shift really at all, we’re conducting a very tight labor market,” said Steve Grove, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). “We’re hearing from employers from across the state that they’re hiring hand over fist. We think that a lot of the fundamentals still point to the fact that employers need workers and that jobs are there.”

In order to attract new workers, employers are trying new methods of recruiting.

“Businesses are finding more accommodations for individuals with disabilities,” Vesey stated. “More businesses have found ways to engage with the East African population than ever before. In fact, I know that some businesses have installed prayer rooms and foot wash stations.”

In Minnesota, the construction industry shrank the most with a 1.1% decline. The leisure and hospitality industry saw the largest gain in the state with a 6.5% growth.