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Idaho unemployment rate drops as 14,000 workers land jobs

| August 21, 2020 11:09 AM

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — About 14,000 people landed jobs or returned to work in July as Idaho’s unemployment rate dropped to 5 percent, the Idaho Department of Labor said Friday.

That’s a significant drop from April’s historic high unemployment rate of 11.8 percent when the economy started shutting down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The agency also said that Idaho’s labor force for the first time in state history exceeded 900,000 workers. About 45,000 of them are looking for jobs.

Most Idaho businesses are open under current guidelines, but officials say Idaho’s economic recovery continues to be hampered by the pandemic.

Johns Hopkins University through Thursday reports that Idaho had more than 29,000 coronavirus infections and 297 deaths.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. But for some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.