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Tony Evers, Governor
Amy Pechacek, Secretary-designee

Department of Workforce Development
Secretary's Office

201 E. Washington Avenue
P.O. Box 7946
Madison, WI 53707-7946 Telephone: (608) 266-3131
Fax: (608) 266-1784

March 23, 2023
CONTACT: DWD Communications

BLS Data: Wisconsin Statewide Unemployment Rate Hits New Record Low of 2.7% in February, State Adds 7,500 Jobs in February

MADISON – The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) today released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary employment estimates for the month of February 2023, which showed Wisconsin's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to a record low of 2.7%.

In addition, total seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs increased 7,500 over the month of February and 50,300 year-over-year to hit a new record high of 2,997,400. The total jobs number puts the state 3,400 jobs above pre-COVID-19 peaks.

Wisconsin's record low unemployment rate of 2.7% for February is down 0.2 percentage points from January's rate of 2.9% and beats the previous record low of 2.8% set in January through April of 2022. The state's labor force participation rate of 64.5% in February was unchanged from January. Nationwide for the month of February, the U.S. unemployment rate was 3.6% with a labor force participation rate of 62.5%.

"Wisconsin is hard at work and February's record low unemployment rate of 2.7% demonstrates the importance of workforce development efforts to equip job seekers with in-demand skills," said DWD Secretary-designee Amy Pechacek. "Gov. Tony Evers' 2023-25 proposed biennial budget aims to build on this momentum by removing employment barriers, advancing regional solutions, and encouraging career growth in health care and green careers. Through paid family and medical leave, the governor's budget also will make Wisconsin more competitive when it comes to attracting and retaining talent."

Today's full report can be viewed on DWD's premier source for labor market information,

View Wisconsin Labor Force Summary


Wisconsin's Department of Workforce Development efficiently delivers effective and inclusive services to meet Wisconsin's diverse workforce needs now and for the future. The department advocates for and invests in the protection and economic advancement of all Wisconsin workers, employers and job seekers through six divisions – Employment and Training, Vocational Rehabilitation, Unemployment Insurance, Equal Rights, Worker's Compensation and Administrative Services. To keep up with DWD announcements and information, sign up for news releases and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.