At the national level we’re not making a lot of headway on the economy, but the national unemployment rate keeps edging down because the national workforce is shrinking.
And it’s shrinking because so many people are leaving it, giving up looking for work altogether.
The exact opposite is true here in North Dakota. Not only has the state been enjoying rock-bottom low unemployment rates, but the size of the state’s workforce has grown by nearly a third since 2000:
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – A report by the North Dakota Department of Commerce shows that the state has created more than 100,000 new jobs since 2000.
The figures show that North Dakota had an average employment count of 429,800 in 2012, compared to 327,700 workers in 2000. That’s an increase of more than 31%.
In the last five years, the state has added 70,000 jobs with 33,000 of those jobs coming in 2012 alone.
By contrast, on the national level the civilian labor force participation rate (the number of Americans above sixteen with non-military jobs) dropped during the national recession and hasn’t yet recovered:
North Dakota just decided to skip the national recession.