Public Assets Institute > Policy Areas > Family Economic Security > Vermont Employment Climbs Another Rung

Vermont Employment Climbs Another Rung

Unemployment dropped in Vermont and 42 other states in November. Vermont’s seasonally adjusted rate went from 5.6 percent in October to 5.3 percent last month, which the U.S. Labor Department called a statistically significant change. The number of unemployed Vermonters dropped from 20,320 in October to 19,074 in November. Meanwhile, 1,645 more Vermonters were working last month than in October.


An historic record for joblessness
While Vermont’s unemployment rate continues to move in the right direction, this is the first time in 30 years that the rate has remained at 5 percent or higher for this long. November marked the 37th straight month with an unemployment rate of at least 5 percent. In the early 1990s, the rate stayed this high for 35 months. And in the late 1970s and early 1980s, the rate was 5 percent or higher for almost five years (58 months).



Minimum wage: almost $8.50
Vermont is one of eight states where the minimum wage will rise automatically on Jan. 1, 2012. In 2005, the Vermont Legislature voted to link the minimum wage to inflation to help workers keep up with the rising cost of living. Seven other states also routinely adjust their minimum wage. On Jan. 1, Vermont’s minimum wage will go up 31 cents, to $8.46 an hour.


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