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Tony Evers, Governor
Amy Pechacek, Secretary

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

Nov. 16, 2023
CONTACT: DWD Communications

BLS Data: State Labor Force Participation Rate Holds Steady in October

MADISON – The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) today released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data showing Wisconsin's unemployment rate was 3.2% last month, up slightly from 3.1% in September and 0.7% below the national rate of 3.9% in October. The state's total labor force participation rate held steady at 65.8%, 3.1% higher than the national labor force participation rate of 62.7%.

Wisconsin's total non-farm jobs remained at a near-record high at 3,013,900 in October, even with a decrease by 1,400 from September. This is 32,800 more jobs than October 2022.

"With the supply of Wisconsin workers increasing slightly over the month, the state's long-term economic picture remains one of expansion, with total jobs hovering around record highs and state unemployment still low compared to the national rate," DWD Secretary Amy Pechacek said. "Initial and weekly unemployment claims remain around record lows. Our state's labor force participation rate held steady even as the national rate decreased. On balance, Wisconsin's labor market economy is robust heading into the final months of 2023."

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 Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.