Idaho Department of Labor

11/17/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 11/17/2023 10:56

Idaho’s October unemployment rate edges up to 3.2%


For Immediate Release: Nov. 17, 2023
Media Contact: [email protected] or [email protected]

- State leads the nation in over-the-year nonfarm job growth at 3.5% -

Idaho's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 3.2% in October from 3.1% in September.

The state's labor force increased by 1,900 people (0.2%) to 971,208.

Idaho's labor force participation rate - the percentage of people 16 years of age or older who are either employed or looking for work - remained at 62.4% in October.

Total employment increased by 693 (0.1%) to 939,743 as unemployment increased by 1,207 (4.6%) to 31,465 - the highest number of unemployed in Idaho since June 2021.

Idaho's nonfarm jobs increased by 3,700 (0.5%) to 863,500 in October. Industry sectors with the greatest over-the-month gains included healthcare and social services (2.1%); wholesale trade (1.6%); state government (1.4%); construction (1.3%); information (1%); professional and business services (0.9%); arts, entertainment, and recreation (0.7%); federal government (0.7%); nondurable goods manufacturing (0.7%); and transportation, warehousing, and utilities (0.6%).

Three industries experienced job declines in October including private educational services (-3.9%), other services (-2.1%), and financial activities (-1.7%).

Four of Idaho's six Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) had over-the-month nonfarm job increases in October. Pocatello saw the largest increase with 1%, followed by Boise
(0.9%), Idaho Falls (0.6%), and Coeur d'Alene (0.1%). Lewiston and Twin Falls saw decreases of 0.3% and 0.2%, respectively.

Year over Year

Idaho's 3.2% unemployment rate for October was four-tenths of a percentage point higher than a year ago. The labor force was up 1.7%, an increase of 16,239 people.

The number of unemployed Idahoans increased 17.5% (4,685) over the same period. Total employed was 1.2% (11,554) higher.

Total nonfarm jobs increased by 3.5% (28,900), which led the nation. Most major industry sectors gained jobs except nondurable goods manufacturing (-4.5%); arts, entertainment, and recreation (-2.1%); real estate and rental and leasing (-1.8%); and retail trade (-0.1%).

Five of Idaho's MSAs saw year-over-year nonfarm job gains in October. Boise and Idaho Falls both saw the greatest increase at 4.2%, followed by Pocatello (4.1%), Coeur d'Alene (3.2%), and Twin Falls (2.4%). Lewiston experienced no observable change.

National Comparisons

Nationally, the unemployment rate increased between September and October, rising to
3.9%. The number of unemployed increased by 160,090 to 6.5 million. Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 150,000 (0.1%) to 156.9 million.


Upcoming Idaho Release Schedule:
Dec. 22, 2023: Statewide and substate labor force and nonfarm jobs data for November 2023
Jan. 19, 2024: Statewide and substate labor force and nonfarm jobs data for December 2023

Find more labor market information at

This project is 100% funded by the U.S. Department of Labor as part of an Employment and Training Administration award totaling $695,785.