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Low unemployment levels recorded across the region

Unemployment numbers in the region as of July. In Brainerd, the number of people unemployed out of the labor force amounted to 268 people out of 6,798, for an unemployment rate of 3.9 percent. Brainerd, using the 56401 ZIP code, has been routinel...

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Unemployment numbers in the region as of July.

In Brainerd, the number of people unemployed out of the labor force amounted to 268 people out of 6,798, for an unemployment rate of 3.9 percent. Brainerd, using the 56401 ZIP code, has been routinely in single digit unemployment since May of 2014 with just one bump up to 11.1 percent in December of that year. Since then the jobless rate has continued to drop and has largely been about 5 percent with winter increases to top out in the 7 percent and 6 percent range.

The Brainerd Micropolitan, which covers Cass and Crow Wing counties, posted a July unemployment rate of 2.9 percent, matching the same rate set in October of 2017. It's a low level not replicated going back in the records stretching all the way back to January 1990. In the mid-90s, the jobless rates were about in the 5 percent range. In October of 1999, the unemployment rate was 3 percent. Rates were below 5 percent and 4 percent for the following summers before inching up in the summer of 2008 as the Great Recession was on the horizon and blew up to 12.7 percent by the winter of 2010 before a recovery was evident albeit slow with jobless rates topping out at 11 to 12.1 percent in the winter of 2011. The Brainerd Micropolitan hasn't reached an unemployment rate of 10 percent or higher since January of 2013.

Seven county area

County, unemployment rate, labor force, jobless

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Aitkin, 4.1 percent, 7,361, 300

Cass, 3.3 percent, 16,745, 556

Crow Wing, 2.8 percent, 34,701, 960

Mille Lacs, 3.3 percent, 13,078, 433

Morrison, 3.1 percent, 17,878, 553

Todd, 3 percent, 13,644, 416

Wadena, 4.1 percent, 5,701, 233

Source: Minnesota Employment and Economic Development rates for July 2018.

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