Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary data yesterday showing the state’s unemployment rate declined to a record low of 2.8 percent in December 2021. This is the lowest unemployment rate in state history, breaking the previous all-time low of 3 percent the state tied in November 2021. As Wisconsin maintains incredibly high labor force participation, BLS data also shows that the total number of Wisconsinites who are counted as unemployed also declined to 86,200, the lowest in state history.

These record-low unemployment numbers also come as the state’s General Fund last month recorded the largest positive balance in Wisconsin state history at the end of the 2020-21 fiscal year using Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). This positive balance of $1.18 billion was the second consecutive year under Gov. Evers’ leadership that the state recorded a positive GAAP balance after the governor announced in 2020 that for the first time since the state began publishing its Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) in 1990, the state was no longer running a deficit.