Nebraska jobless mark of 3.1% unchanged for 4th month

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska’s unemployment rate of 3.1% remained unchanged in October, the fourth month in a row at the figure, according to a report released Tuesday.

The preliminary October rate was four-tenths of a point higher than the adjusted October 2018 rate of 2.7%, the Nebraska Labor Department said in a news release.

The Nebraska rate was well below October’s national preliminary rate of 3.6%, which was up a tenth of a point from 3.5% in September and down two-tenths of a point from the October 2018 rate of 3.8%.

“Nebraska’s nonfarm job count reached a record high in October, as did nonfarm employment in Omaha and Lincoln,” state Labor Commissioner John Albin said. Nonfarm employment rose last month more than 17,300 over the year-ago figure and was up nearly 9,400 over September, the report said.

Private industries with the most growth year over year were mining and construction, up 3,940; leisure and hospitality, up 3,415; and professional and business services, up 1,858. Month to month, the largest gains were seen in trade, transportation and utilities, up 2,359; education and health, up 1,383; and mining and construction, up 992.

The preliminary Omaha-area unemployment rate for October remained 2.8%, the same rate as September, the report said. The October 2018 figure was 2.5%.

Lincoln’s preliminary rate also was unchanged last month at 2.7%. The figure in October 2018 was 2.4%.

Grand Island’s preliminary rate jumped to 4.4% last month from 2.9% in September. The year-ago October figure was 2.6%.

The unemployment rates for Grand Island, Lincoln and Omaha have not been seasonally adjusted, so they cannot be directly compared with the state unemployment rate.

Here are preliminary area labor-market unemployment rates for October, followed by the September rates:

— Beatrice: 5.4%, 3.0%

— Columbus: 2.8%, 2.8%

— Fremont: 2.7%, 2.6%

— Hastings: 3.0%, 2.9%

— Kearney: 2.7%, 2.5%

— Lexington: 2.8%, 2.8%

— Norfolk: 2.6%, 2.5%

— North Platte: 3.3%, 3.4%

— Red Willow: 2.8%, 2.7%

— Scottsbluff: 3.3%, 3.3%