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Despite jump, Springfield MSA unemployment rate lower than most

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While the Springfield metropolitan statistical area's unemployment rate nearly tripled in April, the MSA was more shielded from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic than the majority nationwide.

The local MSA – comprising Greene, Christian, Webster, Polk and Dallas counties – recorded an April jobless rate of 9.1%, an increase from 3.4% in March. The latest unemployment rate also was up from 2.3% in April 2019, according to a news release issued this morning from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The data is not seasonally adjusted.

Only 52 of the 389 MSAs measured by the BLS had unemployment rates of less than 10% in April.

While also recording increases, the Columbia and Jefferson City MSAs in Missouri tied for the second-lowest April unemployment rates nationwide, at 6.5% each. Missouri's unemployment rate was 9.8%, an increase from 3.9% in March, according to the BLS.

Missouri’s MSAs, in order of April unemployment rates, are:
• Columbia, 6.5%, up from 2.6% in March;
• Jefferson City, 6.5%, up from 3.3%;
• St. Joseph, 7.1%, up from 3.6%;
• Springfield, 9.1%, up from 3.4%;
• Cape Girardeau, 9.7%, up from 3.8%;
• Joplin, 10.1%, up from 3.6%;
• St. Louis, 11%, up from 3.5%; and
• Kansas City, 11.2%, up from 3.5%.

Unemployment rates in all U.S. MSAs were higher in April compared with the same month of 2019. The U.S. unemployment rate was 14.4% in April, according to the release.

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