Demand for workers rebounds in December

The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine index shows demand for workers in Minnesota rebounded last month, after a slump in November.

Minnesota employers added 5,100 online help wanted ads in December after a decline of 6,000 in November.

The Conference Board tallied 98,100 Minnesota job ads last month. That’s up 21 percent from the 80,800 postings identified in December of 2010.

Minnesota has one of the lowest ratios of worker supply and demand among the states. There are 1.89 jobless workers for each online job posting in Minnesota. (The figures are calculated for November, 2011, the most recent month for which unemployment data exist.)

Five other states had lower supply/demand ratios, including North Dakota, where vacancies exceed the number of available workers–a labor shortage fueled by the oil boom.

North Dakota 0.88

Nebraska 1.27

South Dakota 1.40

Vermont 1.60

Alaska 1.83

Among major metropolitan areas, the Twin Cities supply/demand rate was second only to that of the nation’s capitol (as reported for October, 2011).

Washington, DC 1.24

Minneapolis-St. Paul 1.36

Despite Minnesota’s continued strength relative to other states and the nation as a whole, the Conference Board says the trend is of declining demand for workers since June of last year. Nationally the trend is declining as well, but for the nation as a whole, the arrow started pointing downward in March, three months before the trend showed up in Minnesota.

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