Iowa’s unemployment rate increased to 3.6 percent in May.
"I think what we’re seeing here — because it is for the month of May — the new entrants and the re-entrants coming into the labor force due to people graduating," state labor market analyst Ann Wagner says. "That’s a pretty common trend every year."
The number of "non-farm" jobs in Iowa reached another record in May, however. "Employers are definitely hiring," Wagner says.
About 3400 jobs were added to the Iowa workforce last month, according to Wagner. The largest hiring gains were in the professional and business service sector, as well as in leisure and hospitality-related industries. "Construction, which had shown a lot of weakness in April, resumed hiring," Wagner says.
Officials estimate there are nearly 60,000 Iowans in the ranks of the "unemployed." That is up from April, but slightly less than the number of unemployed at this time a year ago.