Montana’s unemployment rate below 3% for 21st consecutive month

Governor Greg Gianforte on Aug. 21, announced Montana’s unemployment rate in July is below 3% for the 21st consecutive month. The only other time Montana’s unemployment rate was below 3% was for three months in 2007, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Gov. Gianforte also announced Montana’s total employment reached an all-time high, with nearly 563,000 Montanans working in July.

Since Gov. Gianforte took office in January 2021, nearly 40,000 jobs have been created in Montana, the state’s unemployment rate has dropped from 4% to 2.5%, and the number of unemployed Montanans has fallen by more than 34%.

“Montana continues breaking records for job creation and employment because of Montanans’ hard work and our projobs, pro-growth policies,” Gov. Gianforte said. “Skilled workers with our strong Montana work ethic are in high demand. We’ll continue to prioritize trades education and expand apprenticeship opportunities to empower Montana workers and ensure Montana employers have a highly skilled workforce.”

Total employment in Montana has grown every month of 2023, reaching a record high in July of 562,898 workers.

In July, Montana’s labor force also grew by more than 600 workers, adding 7,500 workers since the start of the year.

As in June, labor force growth slightly outpaced growth in total employment, leading to a slight increase in the state’s unemployment rate to 2.5%.

In July, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.2% overthe month. Shelter was again the largest contributor to the increase, with motor vehicle insurance also contributing. The 12-month change in the allitems index was 3.2%, slightly more than the change for the 12 months ending in June. The index for all items minus food and energy, also called core inflation, increased by 0.2% for the month. For the year ending in July, core inflation was 4.7%.

The next Labor Market Information report, including data from August 2023, will be released on Tuesday, Sept. 19.

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