VT Department of Labor December 2020 Unemployment and Jobs Report

26 January 2021

Today, the Vermont Department of Labor released data on the Vermont economy for the time period covering December 2020. According to household data, the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for December was 3.1 percent. This reflects an increase of one tenth of one percentage point from the prior month’s revised estimate of 3.0 percent.

Commissioner's Message

“The low level of unemployment does not capture the full impact of the pandemic. Not captured in the unemployment rate is the contraction in the labor force that has occurred as a result of COVID-19. Over the last year, nearly 20,000 Vermonters have exited the labor force, either temporarily or permanently. As the spread of the virus declines and the rate of vaccinations increase, it is expected that many, if not all, of these individuals will return to the labor force.  Between now and then, this is a great time for future job seekers to leverage online training to augment their professional or technical skills. Working with the Department’s Workforce Development Division is a great way to learn about training, as well as employment opportunities being recruited for right now.”   - Michael Harrington, Commissioner

State of Vermont Overview

The Vermont seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate increased by one tenth of one percentage point to 3.1 percent in December. The comparable United States rate in December was 6.7 percent, which was unchanged from the revised November estimate. The seasonally-adjusted Vermont data for December show the Vermont civilian labor force decreased by 826 from the prior month’s revised estimate. The number of employed persons decreased by 1,371 and the number of unemployed persons increased by 545. The changes to the number of unemployed persons and the unemployment rate were statistically significant in the seasonally-adjusted series.

The December unemployment rates for Vermont’s 17 labor market areas ranged from 1.9 percent in White River Junction to 4.0 percent in Woodstock and Derby (note: local labor market area unemployment rates are not seasonally-adjusted). For comparison, the December unadjusted unemployment rate for Vermont was 2.8 percent, which was unchanged from the revised unadjusted November level and an increase of seven-tenths of one percentage point from a year ago.

Analysis of Job Changes by Industry


The preliminary ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ jobs estimates for December show an increase of 2,500 jobs when compared to the revised November numbers. There was a decrease of 500 jobs between the preliminary and the revised November estimates due to the inclusion of more data. The broader economic picture can be seen by focusing on the over-the-year changes in this data series. As detailed in the preliminary ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ December data, Total Private industries have decreased by 26,600 jobs (-10.1%) and Government (including public education) employment has decreased by 2,100 jobs (-3.6%) in the past year.


The seasonally-adjusted data for December reports a decrease of 1,100 jobs from the revised November data. As with the ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ data, this over-the-month change is from the revised November numbers which experienced a decrease of 500 jobs from the preliminary estimates. The seasonally-adjusted over-the-month changes in December varied at the industry level. Those with a notable increase include: Transportation, Warehousing & Utilities (+500 jobs or +6.0%), Construction (+400 jobs or +3.7%), and Private Educational Services (+300 jobs or +2.6%). Industries with a notable decrease include: Accommodation & Food Services (-1,800 jobs or -9.0%), Arts, Entertainment & Recreation (-300 jobs or -6.8%), and Other Services (-600 jobs or -6.1%).

The Unemployment and Jobs Report for January is scheduled to be released on Monday, March 15, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. Read full report at http://www.vtlmi.info/press.pdf.

Contact Information

COVID-19 Update: Department of Labor offices are currently closed due to COVID-19. Please contact the Department by phone.

Vermont Department of Labor
5 Green Mountain Drive
P.O. Box 488
Montpelier, 05601-0488
(802) 828-4000

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