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Minnesota's Unemployment Rate Rose to 9.9% in May

Numbers capture situation immediately before reopening of many businesses


St. Paul – Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 9.9% in May according to numbers released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Minnesota added 9,800 payroll jobs in May on a seasonally adjusted basis, up 0.4%, with the private sector adding 27,500 jobs, up 1.3%, during the month. Government lost 17,700 jobs from April to May.

“Our economy is facing an unprecedented challenge, which these numbers reflect. Slight job increases this month are a positive sign, but the employment rebound will continue to vary greatly by sector,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. “DEED is working with other state agencies, business and labor leaders and public health experts to get Minnesotans back to work as quickly and safely as possible.”

May’s employment numbers capture the job situation immediately prior to the lifting of the Stay at Home order and the phased reopening of non-Critical Sector businesses in the state. The rapid changes in employment due to the pandemic have proved difficult to measure using traditional methodologies. After review of the numbers, April’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has been revised up to 8.7% from 8.1%, an unusually large revision.

Seasonally adjusted gains in May were led by leisure & hospitality up 13,800 jobs, with accommodation & food service gaining 11,900 of the jobs. Retail trade gained 10,300 jobs, followed by construction up 7,100 and other services (including personal services) up 3,500, and health care & social assistance up 3,100.

Seasonally adjusted losses in May were led by government, which was down 17,700 jobs, with 16,300 of those losses in local government. Other large seasonally adjusted job losses were in information, down 1,700 and manufacturing, down 1,200 jobs.

U.S. unemployment decreased 1.4 points to 13.3% on a seasonally adjusted basis in May. The U.S. gained 2.5 million payroll jobs in May, up 1.9% with the private sector gaining 3.1 million, up 2.8% on a seasonally adjusted basis.

In Minnesota, the number of people unemployed increased 35,770 to 302,741 in May while the number employed fell by 34,235 to 2,765,258. The Minnesota labor force dropped by 1,535 people in May, with the labor force participation rate remaining stable at 68.9%.

Over the year in May, Minnesota shed 393,101 payroll jobs, down 13.1%, while the private sector shed 346,662 jobs, down 13.5%. This is an improvement for the private sector, which was down 14.3% in April over the year. All supersectors lost jobs in May over the year in Minnesota.

Employment fell in May over the year in all Minnesota Metropolitan Statistical Areas.

Minnesota and U.S. Employment and Unemployment - May 2020

Seasonally Adjusted Not Seasonally Adjusted

Unemployment Rate May2020 April 2020 May 2020 May 2019

Minnesota 9.9 8.7 (revised) 9.4 2.7

U.S. 13.3 14.7 13.0 3.4

Employment May 2020 April 2020 May '19-May '20 Level Change May'19-May '20 % Change

Minnesota 2,599,600 2,589,800 -393,101 -13.1

U.S. 132,912,000 130,403,000 -18,258,000 -12.0

Minnesota and U.S. Over the Year Employment Change: May 2019 - May 2020

Over The Year (OTY) Employment Change By Industry Sector

(Not Seasonally Adjusted)

OTY Job Change OTY Growth Rate (%) U.S. OTY Growth Rate

Total -393,101 -13.1 -12.0

Private -346,662 -13.5 -13.1

Logging & Mining -1,023 -15.3 -16.3

Construction -7,845 -6.4 -5.7

Manufacturing -25,158 -7.8 -8.9

Trade, Transport. & Utilities -41,550 -7.8 -10.5

Information -6,763 -14.4 -8.0

Financial Activities -7,069 -3.7 -0.7

Prof. & Business Services -24,155 -6.3 -9.4

Ed. & Health Services -62,609 -11.3 -8.0

Leisure & Hospitality -141,731 -50.2 -41.2

Other Services -28,759 -25.1 -18.2

Government -46,439 -10.7 -6.0

Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) OTY Employment Change: May 2019 – May 2020

Metropolitan Statistical Area Over the Year Numeric Change in Employment Over the Year Percent Change in Employment

Minneapolis-St. Paul MN-WI MSA -264,492 -12.9%

Duluth-Superior MN-WI MSA -19,767 -14.2%

Rochester MSA -11,933 -9.6%

St. Cloud MSA -12,036 -10.8%

Mankato MSA -6,748 -11.4%

Visit the DEED website to see DEED’s alternative measures of unemployment. You can also find the monthly jobs numbers and unemployment data on DEED’s website.

DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more information about the agency and its services visit the DEED website or follow DEED on Twitter.


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