6/25/2018 2:30:00 PM
Minnesota’s unemployment rate for May dropped to 3.1 percent, with the addition of 10,200 jobs.
With those gains, the state has added 29,188 jobs in the past year, a 1 percent growth rate.
Unofficial data from the Current Population Survey continue to show better employment conditions for Minnesota’s black population. In May, the 12-month average unemployment rate for blacks fell to 6.1% for yet another all-time low (going back to 2000). This is well below the 12-month average of the national black rate of 7.0%, but still more than double the 2.6% rate for Minnesota’s white population. Black labor force participation rate increased again to 73.6%, more than 2 percentage points higher than the 71.5% rate for whites.
The employment situation for Minnesota’s Hispanic population also continues to improve, with an unemployment rate of 4.4% and a participation rate of 75.7%.
All regions except Rochester registered unadjusted over-the-year growth:
By now, thousands of high school graduates have walked across the stage to receive their diplomas. In 2016, more than 4,225 students graduated from high schools in the 23-county Southwest Minnesota planning region, ready to take on the world.
What do these students do after graduating? Minnesota's Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System – SLEDS – provides some insight. In Southwest Minnesota, about 71 percent of last year's graduates enrolled in college in the fall, while 22 percent found jobs and started working.
Graduates in Southwest Minnesota were slightly more likely to attend college than students across the state, and therefore slightly less likely to immediately join the workforce. The mix of colleges Southwest grads attended was also slightly different: A higher percentage of local students attended public four-year state universities (30 percent vs. 28 percent) and three percent more attended college in other states (32 percent vs. 29 percent), mainly North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa.
These students may be responding to the educational requirements of employment opportunities in the region, which were more likely to require vocational training or an associate degree than jobs statewide. Southwest also had a lower percentage of jobs requiring a bachelor's degree or higher, although there were high levels of demand for jobs across the entire educational spectrum.
See the Southwest Region’s Local Look.