Park County bucked the trend and recorded a lower unemployment rate in July despite a slight uptick in the statewide number.

The county’s rate dropped to 3.5 percent as the statewide adjusted average rose to 3.6.

It’s a sign of the continued positive effect of summer seasonal jobs even as the end of summer looms near and there are a few businesses ready to gobble up summer season workers.

Recently Y-Tex manager Connie Demple directed a post online to seasonal workers about the manufacturing company’s year-round jobs.

“While the rest of Cody is winding down, Y-Tex is gearing up,” she wrote.

Still, the rate generally rises again after the end of summer, and this year the rate could also be affected by layoffs at Northwest College in Powell and the closure of Cody Labs.

While the first layoffs were planned for June, two more phases were slated for early August and late September, although Lannett recently announced it had closed the location earlier than expected. 

While finally lower than the state average, Park’s unemployment rate is actually higher than July 2018, when it was 3.4 percent.

Most county unemployment rates fell slightly or stayed the same from June to July. The largest decreases occurred in Niobrara (down 3.3-2.9 percent), Uinta (4.3-4), Teton (2.3-2), Natrona (4.2-3.9), Goshen (4.1-3.8), and Converse (3.2-2.9) counties. Unemployment increased in Campbell County (3.7-5.7) and Crook County (3-3.6).

From July 2018 to July 2019, unemployment fell in 13 counties, rose in eight counties, and remained unchanged in two counties. The largest jobless rate decreases were seen in Converse (-3.7-2.9), Fremont (5.2-4.6), and Natrona (4.4-3.9) counties. Unemployment increased in Campbell (4.1- 5.7), Crook (2.9-3.6), Sublette (3.6-4.1), and Washakie (3.9-4.4) counties.

Campbell County had the highest unemployment rate in July at 5.7 percent, due in large part to the Blackjewel mine closures that initially put more than 600 employees on unemployment. 

The lowest unemployment rate was Teton at 2 percent.

Total nonfarm employment in Wyoming (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) increased from 292,600 in July 2018 to 298,900 in July 2019, a gain of 6,300 jobs (2.2 percent).

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