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Utah's unemployment rate was half of national rate 8.4% in August

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Utah's unemployment rate dropped slightly in August, from 4.5% in July to 4.1%. The national rate lowered from July's 10.2% to 8.4%. (Photo: KUTV)

Utah's unemployment rate dropped slightly in August, from 4.5% in July to 4.1%. The national rate lowered from July's 10.2% to 8.4%.

Approximately 66,100 were out of work last month, according to the Utah Department of Workforce Services.

The nonfarm payroll employment for August contracted an estimated 1.6% across the past 12 months, with 25,300 fewer jobs. Utah's current employment level stands at 1,534,000.

The July year-over job change was revised up from -1.8% to -1.6%.

Mark Knold, Chief Economist with the UDWS, said Utah is in a relatively good spot on the "path of improvement."

“Utah’s economy continues along its path of improvement,” Mark Knold, Chief Economist with the UDWS, stated in a press release. “The unemployment rate dropped again and remains one of the nation’s lowest. While the overall pace of job re-engagement is unchanged from July, there was an underlying employment improvement in the private sector, which is the Utah economy’s foundational and market-driven component.

It speaks to the energy and prospects within the Utah economy.

Utah's August private sector employment recorded a year-over decline of 1.6%, an improvement over July’s -2.1% deficit, UDWS reported.

Four of 10 private-sector major industry groups posted net job gains in August, including:

  • Construction (8,400 jobs)
  • Trade, Transportation and Utilities (5,200 jobs)
  • Other Services (1,500 jobs)
  • Financial Activities (1,400 jobs)

Six industry groups posted employment declines. The most impacted were :

  • Leisure and Hospitality Services (-26,600 jobs)
  • Professional and Business Services (-6,000 jobs)

Of the six that show year-over job loss, all are striving to re-employ workers and continue to show job improvements, UDWS stated.

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