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Vermont’s Unemployment Rate Decreased to 2.9 Percent in September

October 22, 2021

Today, the Vermont Department of Labor released data on the Vermont economy for the time period covering September 2021. According to household data, the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for September was 2.9 percent. This reflects a decrease of one-tenth of one percentage point from the prior month’s revised estimate.

Commissioner's Message

“This economic recovery is unusual for many reasons. While the unemployment rate is near pre-pandemic levels, the labor force is down approximately 7% or 25,000 individuals. The number of filled jobs is down about 6% or 20,000 positions. This contraction in the labor force combined with Vermont employers ramping up hiring efforts to fill open positions is resulting in an extremely tight labor market. The Department’s job board,, shows over 10,000 open positions currently under recruitment in Vermont and our local workforce teams continue to work with jobseekers, offering both in-person and virtual services, such as workshops, job fairs, and one-on-one career consultations.


Finally, National Apprenticeship Week is right around the corner! This nation-wide celebration of apprenticeship programs and participants is November 15-21st and will highlight the importance of industry recognized credentials. Vermont has over 300 registered apprenticeship programs across 35 different occupations, and the average rate of pay for an apprentice at the completion of the program is $23.75 per hour. More information can be found online at or by calling 833-719-1051.”  - Michael Harrington, Commissioner

State of Vermont Overview

The Vermont seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 2.9 percent in September. The comparable United States rate in September was 4.8 percent, which was a decrease of four-tenths of one percentage point from the revised August estimate. The seasonally-adjusted Vermont data for September show the Vermont civilian labor force increased by 796 from the prior month’s revised estimate (see Table 1). The number of employed persons increased by 1,378 and the number of unemployed persons decreased by 582. The changes to the number of employed persons, the number of unemployed persons and the unemployment rate were statistically significant in the seasonally-adjusted series.

The September unemployment rates for Vermont’s 17 labor market areas ranged from 1.4 percent in White River Junction to 3.1 percent in Bennington (note: local labor market area unemployment rates are not seasonally-adjusted – see Table 2). For comparison, the September unadjusted unemployment rate for Vermont was 2.0 percent, which was a decrease of nine-tenths of one percentage point from the revised unadjusted August level and a decrease of two and five-tenths percentage points from a year ago.

Analysis of Job Changes by Industry
Seasonally-Adjusted (Table 3)

The seasonally-adjusted data for September reports a decrease of 2,900 jobs from the revised August data. There was a decrease of 900 jobs between the preliminary and the revised August estimates due to the inclusion of more data. The seasonally-adjusted over-the-month changes in September varied at the industry level. Those with a notable increase include: Real Estate, Rental & Leasing (+100 jobs or +3.6%) and Construction (+200 jobs or +1.4%). Industries with a notable decrease include: Local Government (-1,600 jobs or -5.5%), Arts, Entertainment & Recreation (-200 jobs or -4.9%), and Accommodation & Food Services (-800 or -3.0%).

Not-Seasonally-Adjusted (Table 4)

The preliminary ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ jobs estimates for September shows a decrease of 400 jobs when compared to the revised August numbers. As with the ‘seasonally-adjusted’ data, this over-the-month change is from the revised August numbers which experienced a decrease of 100 jobs from the preliminary estimates. 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’ September data, Total Private industries have increased by 7,900 jobs (+3.4%) and Government (including public education) employment has decreased by 700 jobs (-1.3%) in the past year.

The Unemployment and Jobs Report for October is scheduled to be released on Friday, November 19, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. Read full report at