Snowy February Brings Jobs to Montana, but Increases Unemployment in U.S.
A stormy 2014 February brought increases in the snow-pack and the U.S. unemployment rate, but despite receiving blizzards and avalanches, Montana actually posted big job gains through the weird weather.
"Very good news for the first couple of months in 2014, we've had very strong job growth," said Bureau of Labor and Industry Senior Economist Barbara Wagner. "In January we added nearly 2,000 jobs, then in February we posted 3,000 jobs. Really, that's about how much we usually post in half of a year."
Adding 3,000 jobs in a month is way above the normal average. In fact, back in the boom years of 2005 and 2006, the average new job rate was less than half of 3,000.
"The national unemployment rate is still much higher than Montana's rate, it's at 6.7 percent," Wagner said. "It actually increased a little bit in February, they said that that was because of weather related issues throughout the U.S., Whereas in Montana we deal with the weather. We actually go to work, apparently they don't do that back on the east coast."
The national unemployment rate increased by 0.1 percent to 6.7 percent in February. Montana's unemployment rate, on the other hand, dropped 0.2 percent down to 5.1 percent.