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Missouri unemployment rate continues decline

by Ryan Pivoney | March 24, 2022 at 4:00 a.m.
A Jefferson City business looks for employees as evidenced by its help wanted sign. (Julie Smith/News Tribune photo)

An estimated 9,200 Missourians found employment in February, dropping the state's unemployment rate from 3.8 percent to 3.7 percent.

The Missouri Economic Research and Information Center on Wednesday released its monthly jobs report detailing Missouri's employment trends in February.

An estimated 2.9 million people were employed in Missouri in February.

With an unemployment rate of 3.7 percent, an estimated 114,174 people in Missouri are without jobs. That's down 3,870 people from MERIC's January estimate of 118,044 jobless Missourians.

Missouri's unemployment rate remains slightly below the national unemployment rate, which decreased from 4 percent in January to 3.8 percent in February. Missouri's rate has been at or below the national rate for the past five years, according to MERIC.

An estimated 104,300 jobs in Missouri have been filled over the past year, and the state's unemployment rate fell 1.2 percent since February 2021.

Fewer jobs were added in February than in the month prior; employment grew by 9,200 jobs in February and, after a revision to MERIC's initial estimates, by 9,600 jobs from December 2021 to January 2022.

Employment increased in goods-producing and service-providing industries throughout February and over the course of the past year.

Goods-producing industries added 2,200 jobs in February with mining, logging and construction leading the way with 1,400 new jobs. Manufacturing gained 800 jobs.

Service-providing industries added 8,300 jobs throughout February. Gains were concentrated to trade, transportation and utilities with 3,600 new jobs, professional and business services with 1,900 new jobs, and leisure and hospitality with 1,600 new jobs. Financial activities grew by 1,000 jobs, education and health services grew by 200 jobs and other service industries grew by 500 jobs.

Statewide government employment decreased by 1,300 jobs in February.

In Jefferson City, employment increased by 300 jobs in February. Government employment in the Capital City didn't change for the month, but goods-producing industries saw gains and retail trade added an estimated 100 jobs.

The leisure and hospitality industry has led the state's employment gains over the past year with the addition of 33,800 jobs. Several other industries saw substantial increases over the past year as well, including professional and business services with 22,100 jobs, trade, transportation and utilities with 20,500 jobs, and mining, logging and construction with 16,400 jobs.

Other service and information industries, manufacturing and government saw employment gains to a lesser degree over the past year. Employment in financial activities decreased by an estimated 2,500 jobs since February of last year.

Print Headline: State unemployment rate continues decline


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