Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

September 1, 2020
Tooele County’s unemployment rate drops for 3rd consecutive month

‘Utah economy is rebounding with vigor,’ says state economist 

Tooele County’s unemployment statistics for July showed a slight improvement over June, according to the Department of Workforce services.

Tooele County’s July unemployment rate was 5.4% compared to 5.7% for June, according to a DWS report.

With a workforce of 33,827 people, Tooele County’s July unemployment rate of 5.4% means there were 1,838 people in Tooele County out of work and actively looking for a job.

Tooele County’s unemployment rate hit a new peak of 10.5% in April 2020, leaving 3,528 Tooele County residents unemployed at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While the July 2020 unemployed number of 1,838 is almost half of April 2020’s 3,538, it is twice the January 2020 unemployed number of 919 when the County’s unemployment rate was 2.7%. 

At the unemployment height of the Great Recession, unemployment in Tooele County reached 8.6% in November 2009.

Tooele County’ four week moving average of new unemployment claims was 60 for the week ending Aug. 16, the sixth consecutive week of less than 100 claims since the four-week average of new claims in Tooele County climbed to 771 for the week ending March 29.

The four-week average of new claims remains above historical trends for Tooele County with the average for the same week of 2019 and 2018 at 23 and 34 respectively.

Statewide, the number of people that have stopped requesting unemployment benefits have out numbered the number of new unemployment claims, but new claims have exceeded 5,000.

“For two consecutive weeks we have seen more than 7,000 people stop requesting the unemployment benefit; a positive sign that many have reconnected into the workforce,” said Kevin Burt, Unemployment Insurance Division director for the Utah Department of Workforce Services. “However, we also continue to see over 5,000 new claims a week, indicating that COVID-19 continues to be disruptive and the need for this critical benefit remains.”

The hardest hit job sector in Tooele County is professional and business services with 1,013 unemployment 1,013 unemployment claims filed followed by manufacturing with 635 claims, according to the DWS.

Professional services includes legal advice and representation; accounting, bookkeeping, and payroll services; architectural, engineering, and specialized design services; computer services; consulting services; research services; advertising services; photographic services; translation and interpretation services; veterinary services; and other professional, scientific, and technical services.

Statewide, including Tooele County, July marked the third consecutive month of improvement in employment since April.

“July’s employment assessment is a third consecutive month of Utah employment improvement,” reported Mark Knold, chief economist at the DWS. “While the pace of job gains moderated a bit compared to the prior two months, the Utah economy is rebounding with vigor.”

Tooele County’s unemployment rate of 5.4% in July 2020 placed it as the 15th lowest unemployment rate of Utah’s 29 counties. The highest rate was 11.5% in Garfield County.The lowest rate was 3.2% in Cache County.

The state’s unemployment rate for July 2020 was 4.5%. The U.S. unemployment rate for July was 10.2%.


Tim Gillie

Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Tim has been writing for the Transcript Bulletin since October 2017. In February 2019 he was named as editor. In addition to being editor, Tim continues to write about Tooele County government, education, business, real estate, housing, politics and the state Legislature.A native of Washington state and a graduate of Central Washington University, Tim became a journalist after a 20 year career with the Boy Scouts of America.

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