BOISE -- Reductions in hiring and higher seasonal government layoffs drove Idaho's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate up two-tenths of a percent to 6.6 percent in July.
The Idaho Department of Labor note Friday that this is the third consecutive monthly increase in the unemployment rate, which stood at 6.1 percent in April.
The number of workers without jobs rose over 1,600 from June to July, exceeding 50,000 for the first time since last November. Total employment fell by 800 jobs to just over 723,000 -- the lowest employment total since October 2012.
Nationally, the unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a point to 7.4 percent in July.
Unemployment benefits and the number of claimants in July were down 41 percent from July 2012, to $13.3 million in benefits being paid to 11,100 claimants.