News Release Information

January 09, 2015


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Unemployment in the Boise Area by County - November 2014

Unemployment Rates in All Five Counties Below the National Average

In November, Ada County, Idaho had the lowest unemployment rate, 3.2 percent, in the Boise City-Nampa, Idaho, Metropolitan Statistical Area, followed by Owyhee County at 3.3 percent, the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Richard J. Holden, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that all five area counties’ jobless rates were below the U.S. average of 5.5 percent.. (See chart 1. The Technical Note at the end of this release contains the metropolitan area definition. All data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year analysis is used throughout.)

 Chart 1. Unemployment rates for the United States and the 5 counties in the Boise-City-Nampa, Idaho Metropolitan Statistical Area, November 2014, not seasonally adjusted

In November 2014, all five of the counties in the area had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases, ranging from 2.4 percentage points in Boise County to 0.7 points in Owyhee County. Nationally, the unemployment rate was down 1.1 percentage points from November a year ago. (See table A).

Table A. Unemployment rates for the United States and the 5 counties in the Boise City-Nampa, Idaho, November 2014, not seasonally adjusted
Area Unemployment rate Change from
November 2012 November 2013 November 2014 November 2012 to November 2014(1) November 2013 to November 2014(1)

United States

7.4 6.6 5.5 -1.9 -1.1

Boise City-Nampa, Idaho, MSA

6.4 5.2 3.6 -2.8 -1.6

Ada County

6.0 4.8 3.2 -2.8 -1.6

Boise County

7.0 6.7 4.3 -2.7 -2.4

Canyon County

7.5 6.2 4.5 -3.0 -1.7

Gem County

7.9 6.2 4.6 -3.3 -1.6

Owyhee County

4.9 4.0 3.3 -1.6 -0.7

(1) Data for the Boise City-Nampa, Idaho, and its components are preliminary for the most recent month.

All five of the Boise area counties had unemployment rate decreases over the two year period from November 2012 to November 2014. The largest declines occurred in Gem County, down 3.3 percentage points, and Canyon County, down 3.0 points. Excluding Owyhee, all area counties had two-year jobless rate declines larger than the nationwide decrease of 1.9 percentage points.

The Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment news release for December is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, February 4, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT).

Technical Note

This release presents unemployment rate data for states and counties from the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program, a federal-state cooperative endeavor.

Definitions.The labor force and unemployment data are based on the same concepts and definitions as those used for the official national estimates obtained from the Current Population Survey (CPS), a sample survey of households that is conducted for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) by the U.S. Census Bureau. The LAUS program measures employment and unemployment on a place-of-residence basis.  The universe for each is the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years of age and over.  Employed persons are those who did any work at all for pay or profit in the reference week (the week including the 12th of the month) or worked 15 hours or more without pay in a family business or farm, plus those not working who had a job from which they were temporarily absent, whether or not paid, for such reasons as labor-management dispute, illness, or vacation. Unemployed persons are those who were not employed during the reference week (based on the definition above), had actively looked for a job sometime in the 4-week period ending with the reference week, and were currently available for work; persons on layoff expecting recall need not be looking for work to be counted as unemployed.  The labor force is the sum of employed and unemployed persons. The unemployment rate is the number of unemployed as a percent of the labor force.

Method of estimation.Estimates for the substate areas in this release are prepared through indirect estimation procedures using a building-block approach. Employment estimates, which are based largely on "place of work" estimates from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) program, are adjusted to refer to place of residence as used in the CPS. Unemployment estimates are aggregates of persons previously employed in industries covered by state unemployment insurance (UI) laws and entrants to the labor force data from the CPS. The substate estimates of employment and unemployment, which geographically exhaust the entire state, are adjusted proportionally to ensure that they add to the independently estimated state or balance-of-state totals. A detailed description of the estimation procedures is available from BLS upon request.

Annual revisions.Labor force and unemployment data for prior years reflect adjustments made at the end of each year.  The adjusted estimates reflect updated population data from the U.S. Census Bureau, any revisions in the other data sources, and model reestimation. In most years, historical data for the most recent five years (both seasonally adjusted and not seasonally adjusted) are revised near the beginning of each calendar year, prior to or coincident with the release of January estimates.

Area definitions.  The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, dated December 1, 2009. A detailed list of the geographic definitions is available at

The Boise City-Nampa, Idaho. Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Ada, Boise, Canyon, Gem, and Owyhee Counties in Idaho.


Last Modified Date: Friday, January 09, 2015