Latest report shows Wisconsin job growth slows

Job growth is still occurring in Wisconsin, but it was cut by more than half in the first six months of 2019, according to quarterly data released last week by the U.S. Department of Labor.

After reporting an average monthly year-over-year employment gain of 28,000 during the first six months of 2018, job growth declined to an average monthly year-over-year gain of 11,000 jobs in the first half of 2019.

According to an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the numbers come from a quarterly census of employment that is the most comprehensive count of national job creation.

By the end of June, Wisconsin had a total of 2,945,000 nonfarm jobs, an increase of 9,340 from June 2018, but that lagged well behind the year-over-year increase from June 2017 to June 2018, a period in which state employers added 27,000 jobs to their payrolls.

Meanwhile national economic growth has slowed from 3.1 percent in the first quarter to 1.9 percent in the third quarter, and the state’s unemployment rate has ticked up from 2.8 percent in April to 3.3 percent in September.  Economists attribute the slowdown to low population growth, the difficulty employers are having with replace retiring baby boomers, and declining business investment spurred by uncertainty over national trade policy.