Wisconsin saw one of the largest unemployment rate increases in the country in April

Economic indicators

Last updated on May 27th, 2020 at 05:45 pm

Wisconsin’s unemployment rate jumped from 3.1% in March to 14.1% in April, an 11-point increase that was tied for the 12th largest change in the country.

Ohio saw the same size shift as Wisconsin, going from 5.8% unemployment to 16.8%.

The biggest shift in the country was in Nevada, which already had the highest unemployment rate at 6.9% in March and jumped to 28.2% in April. Hawaii was also hit hard, with unemployment jumping from 2.4% to 22.3%.

Wisconsin’s Midwestern neighbors saw a mixed performance relative to the rest of the country. Michigan had the third largest unemployment rate jump, going from 4.3% to 22.7%. Indiana was the fifth hardest hit, increasing from 3% to 16.9%, and Illinois saw the ninth largest jump with a shift from 4.2% to 16.4%.

On the other hand, Minnesota fared much better, tying for the fifth smallest increase, and Iowa had the 14th smallest. Those states still did see 5.2-point and 6.9-point increases in their unemployment rates.

Overall, Wisconsin went from having the 14th lowest unemployment rate in the country to the bottom half at 29th.

Wisconsin’s private sector employment dropped by nearly 386,000 jobs in April, according to data released Thursday by the state Department of Workforce Development. The April report was the first monthly jobs data to show the impact of the coronavirus on the labor market because of the timing of surveys used to collect the data.

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Arthur Thomas
Arthur covers manufacturing for BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.