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The U.S. Census Bureau recently released annual 2014 city population estimates. Nationally, Bismarck ranked as the 68th fastest-growing city out of 746 with populations over 50,000. Bismarck added 1,615 residents since 2013 for a 2.4 percent gain. Grand Forks and Fargo ranked 121 and 142, respectively. Grand Forks gained 1,041 (+1.9 percent) residents while Fargo gained 1,948 (+1.7 percent). The growth rates for North Dakota’s ten largest cities ranged from +12.1 percent for Williston to +0.1 percent for Jamestown. The five largest-growing North Dakota cities were Williston (+2,656), Fargo (+1,948), West Fargo (+1,815), Bismarck (+1,615), and Minot (+1,599). For more information, please visit the U.S. Census Bureau Population Estimates webpage..


The Labor Market Information Center has released the latest Online Job Openings Report (OJOR), a monthly recap of online job openings and resumés activity from Job Service North Dakota’s labor exchange system. Online job openings totaled 24,758 open and available positions in April 2015. Openings were higher by 5.4 percent (+1,262) over the prior month but 3.5 percent lower (-895) than one year ago. For additional details, please visit the Online Job Openings Report page.


The 2014 Employment and Wages by Occupation report is now available. Employment and wages by occupation are compiled using results from a semiannual survey conducted by the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program. The sample-based survey asks employers to provide data regarding occupational employment and wages for their establishment. The results are summarized and estimates of employment and wage (annual and/or hourly) data are calculated for most occupations in the state, its metro areas and designated nonmetro areas. Employment and wages by occupation can be used to analyze occupational wage rates across markets, develop staffing patterns and occupation projections, and plan for careers. The report references 2014 data. The new employment and wage data are also available interactively by visiting Analyzer, our online data query tool in NDWIN.


The U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is responsible for maintaining and updating statistical area delineations, a task it has performed every decade since the 1950 Census. In 2013, OMB announced revised delineations of metropolitan, micropolitan, and combined statistical areas, which replaced delineations from 2003. The Labor Market Information Center of Job Service North Dakota began adopting the changes starting with 2015 data. For North Dakota, two areas were affected by delineation changes: the Bismarck metro area and the Dickinson micro area. All other North Dakota metro, micro, and combined area delineations remain unchanged. The old Bismarck metro area delineation consisted of Burleigh and Morton Counties. The new Bismarck metro area delineation now consists of Burleigh, Morton, Oliver, and Sioux Counties. The old Dickinson micro area delineation consisted of Billings and Stark Counties. The new Dickinson micro area delineation now consists of only Stark County. While most statistical programs were able to apply delineation changes to their historical data series, select programs were not able to reconstruct older data due to methodology limitations resulting in a series break. For select data, an update to the 2013 delineations won’t occur until 2016 (e.g. employment and wages by occupation). A vast majority of data in NDWIN have been updated with the new area delineations. When using Analyzer, our data query tool, geographic area options will be notated as either 2003 delineations or 2013 delineations. If a historical reconstruction for a data series occurred, 2013 metro, micro, or combined area delineations will be the only options available.


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Jobs Report

May 27, 2015

Preliminary estimates indicate North Dakota's April 2015 employment increased by 1.1 percent (+4,900) from the prior month and is up 2.6 percent (+11,900) from the same period last year. For a detailed breakdown, visit the Jobs Report page.

North Dakota Employment Estimates
Year-Over-Year Percent Change
April 2014 - April 2015

Graph showing North Dakota's Employment Change Year-over-Year by Month

Labor Force and Unemployment Statistics

May 27, 2015

Preliminary labor force statistics indicate North Dakota’s April 2015 not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.1 percent, down from the prior month but higher than the 2.8 percent rate reported one year ago [region, metro, and county data will be released June 1st]. Adjusted for seasonality, North Dakota’s unemployment rate was 3.1 percent, unchanged from the prior month. The U.S. rate was 5.4 percent. For a detailed breakdown, visit the Labor Force and Unemployment Statistics page.

North Dakota Unemployment Rate
Not Seasonally Adjusted
April 2014 - April 2015

Graph showing the Monthly Unemployment Rate

County Unemployment Rates
Not Seasonally Adjusted
MARCH 2015

Map of North Dakota showing County Unemployment Rates PDF Download PDF Version

Initial Claims Data

This report highlights the most recently released monthly initial claims data from the unemployment insurance program. For a detailed breakdown, visit the Initial Claims Data page.

County Initial Claims
Year-Over-Year Numeric Change
April 2014 - April 2015

Map of North Dakota showing County Initial Claims Year-Over-Year Numeric Change PDF Download PDF Version