Oklahoma City’s unemployment rate — already one of the lowest in the nation among large cities — improved in July, as did the rates in more than two-thirds of the state’s counties.
The Oklahoma City metro jobless rate dipped to 4.5 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point from June, data released Wednesday by the U.S. Labor Department show.
Of the 49 metropolitan areas with a population of 1 million or more, Minneapolis had the lowest jobless rate at 4.2 percent. Detroit had the highest unemployment rate at 9.8 percent in July.
The Oklahoma City metro area showed the biggest job gains in the mining sector, which includes energy, according to preliminary data from a survey of employers. The largest job losses were in the government sector.
Meanwhile, unemployment rates declined in 54 of the state’s 77 counties, the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission said.
The highest jobless rates were seen in Latimer County, 8.2 percent; McCurtain County, 7.9 percent; and McIntosh County, 7.7 percent, the agency said. The lowest unemployment rates were in Beckham County, 2.6 percent, and Grant, Roger Mills and Woodward counties, each at 2.7 percent.
In general, the lowest unemployment rates are in northwest Oklahoma, excluding the far western Panhandle, while the highest rates are in southeast Oklahoma.