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Industrial Analysis

By Nick Dobbins
April 2021

Monthly analysis is based on seasonally adjusted employment data.
Yearly analysis is based on unadjusted employment data.


State employers added 21,600 jobs (0.8%) on a seasonally adjusted basis in March. It was the third consecutive month with positive job growth. Goods producers were up 2.3% (9,800 jobs) while service providers were up 0.5% (11,800 jobs).

On an annual basis the state lost 187,206 jobs or 5.7%, a marked improvement over February's 7.3% over-the-year decline. Service providers were down 6.1% (150,887 jobs) while employment among goods producers was off by 3.7% (16,319 jobs).

Minnesota Seasonally Adjusted Nonagricultural Wage and Salary Employment

Mining and Logging

Employment in Mining and Logging was flat over the month in March, holding steady at 6,200 jobs.

Over the year employment in the supersector was down by 426 jobs or 6.7%, an improvement over February's 7.8% over-the-year decline.


Construction employment was up by 7,900 or 6.8% in March. It was the largest proportional over-the-month growth of any supersector in the state. Coming on the heels of a 4.4% decline in February, it's likely that the seasonally adjusted growth over the month was at least partially caused by shifting weather patterns this year. This was the largest single month of growth on record for the supersector.

Over the year Construction employers lost 2,115 jobs or 1.9%, a dramatic improvement over February's 8.8% over-the-year decline, once again likely owing to more favorable weather for the highly seasonal industry group.


Manufacturing employers added 1,900 jobs (0.6%) in March. Durable Goods employment was up by 2,300, while their Non-Durable Goods counterparts shed 400 jobs (0.4%).

On an annual basis Manufacturers lost 13,778 jobs or 4.3%, an improvement over February's 5.2% over-the-year decline. Durable Goods Manufacturers drove the decline, off by 11,800 jobs or 5.7%.

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

Employment in Trade, Transportation, and Utilities was up by 3,900 or 0.8% in March. Growth was split between Retail Trade (up 2,800 or 1.0%) and Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities (up 1,100 or 1.1%). Employment in Wholesale Trade was flat.

On an annual basis the supersector lost 16,245 jobs or 3.1%, with all three component sectors posting negative growth. Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities had the steepest declines, off by 4.5% or 4,864 jobs.


Information employment was down 400 (0.2%) over the month in March.

Over the year the supersector lost 5,427 jobs or 12%. It was the second-largest proportional decline for any supersector in the state, trailing only the hard-hit Leisure and Hospitality.

Financial Activities

Financial Activities employment was off by 500 (0.3%) in March, as it was one of only three supersector to lose jobs on the month. Real Estate and Rental and Leasing was down 0.3% (100 jobs), and Finance and Insurance was down 0.2% (400 jobs).

Over the year Financial Activities employers lost 2,006 jobs (1%), maintaining consistent over-the-year growth from February.

Professional and Business Services

Employment in Professional and Business Services was up by 5,500 or 1.5%, in March. The growth was led by Administrative and Support Services, which was up by 5,200 or 4.5%. Administrative and Support Services is home to the large Employment Services industry.

Over the year Professional and Business Services employers lost 18,697 jobs or 5%. All three major component sectors lost jobs, with Administrative and Support Services down 7.6% (9,368 jobs), Management of Companies down 3.9% (3,506 jobs), and Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services down 3.7% (5,823 jobs).

Educational and Health Services

Educational and Health Services employers added 300 jobs (0.1%) in March, with losses in Health Care and Social Assistance (down 300 or 0.1%) tempering the modest growth in Educational Services (up 600 or 0.9%).

Over the year the supersector lost 19,688 jobs or 3.5%, an improvement from February's 4.5% decline. Educational Services was down 3.1% (2,340 jobs) while Health Care and Social Assistance was down 3.6% (17,348 jobs).

Leisure and Hospitality

Leisure and Hospitality employment was up 2% (4,300 jobs) in March as the supersector continues on the long road back towards pre-COVID-19 levels. Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation was up 1,800 jobs (4.8%) while Accommodation and Food Services was up 2,500 (1.4%).

Over the year the supersector lost 54,691 jobs or 21.5%. It remained the largest decline of any supersector in the state.

Other Services

Employment in Other Services was up by 400 (0.4%) in March, rebounding somewhat from the loss of 1,500 in February.

Over the year Other Services employers shed 12,291 jobs or 10.9%. Losses were greatest among Religious, Grantmaking, Civic, Professional, and Similar Organizations, down 12.9% or 8,165 jobs.


Government employers lost 1,700 jobs (0.4%) in March. Growth at the State and Federal levels (up 0.2% and 0.6%, respectively) was more than offset by the loss of 2,100 (0.8%) at the Local Government level.

Over the year Government employers lost 21,842 jobs (5.1%). Federal employers added 221 jobs (0.7%), but State Government was off by 2,779 (2.7%), and Local Government was down 19,284 (6.5%), with most of that loss coming in Local Government Educational Services (down 12,913 or 8.5%).


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