Utah’s job growth and low unemployment highlighted on Salt Lake Chamber dashboard

The Salt Lake Chamber’s Roadmap to Prosperity Coalition, in partnership with the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, has updated the Economic Dashboard for December to help business leaders know where Utah stands in the overall recovery. This tool tracks the state’s path to a complete economic recovery from the pandemic recession and provides actionable context for decision-makers.

“Utah’s economic recovery into stable growth through the pandemic continues to shine a light on our fundamentals and strong economic playbook,” said Derek Miller, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber and Downtown Alliance. “The December dashboard shows how the economy is continuing to expand in the construction, financial and trade sectors while facing headwinds with leisure and hospitality and health services. Our consumer confidence remains stable with retail sales continuing to grow year over year. As coronavirus variants evolve, Utah’s robust economic rebound shows what smart planning, public health awareness, and strong fundamentals can achieve, an economic revival to lead the country.” 

While consumer confidence took a dip, this was expected with the uptick in delta variant coronavirus cases. Lingering challenges associated with the pandemic temper progress, but growing labor participation coupled with job growth forecasts drive continued strength on the road back to inclusive prosperity. Utah continues to be the gold standard when it comes to collaboration, resilience and broad industry sector strength.

Three essential insights from the December 2021 Roadmap to Prosperity Dashboard include:

  1. Utah’s two-year job growth is highest in the nation. Utah’s October two-year job growth of 3.7% is the highest in the nation, and the state is one of only four showing positive job change. 
  2. Utah’s unemployment rate drops below pre-pandemic levels. Utah’s October unemployment rate of 2.2% is lower than the February 2019 rate of 2.5%. Utah’s unemployment rate ranks second in the nation.
  3. Job change is uneven across industries. While Utah has seen two-year job growth overall, not all industries have expanded. Jobs have declined in the Leisure & Hospitality, Government, and Natural Resources industries.

The Dashboard is updated monthly, providing essential insights, tracking 10 timely and leading measures, and sharing pertinent indicators since the start of the pandemic. This provides leaders with critical and timely information to make informed decisions.

“The dashboard continues to impress our leaders and outside observers alike thanks to Utah’s economic strength month after month,” said Natalie Gochnour, director of the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. “While some headwinds remain, Utah’s economy has shown stable consumer demand, confidence, and steady health outcomes heading into the holiday season. We continue to weather the blows of the pandemic and exude strength with our business and community leaders showing the way.” 

The Roadmap to Prosperity Coalition is a business-led coalition, supported by the Salt Lake Chamber, focused on implementing and promoting our economic recovery. The Coalition is co-chaired by Mikelle Moore, SVP and Chief Community Health Officer, Intermountain Healthcare, and Scott Parson, CEO, Staker Parson Materials & Construction. Investors of the Coalition include Mountain America Credit Union, WCF Insurance, Clark and Christine Ivory Foundation, Deseret Management Corporation, Intermountain Healthcare, Staker Parson Materials & Construction, and Rio Tinto Kennecott.

To view the Roadmap to Prosperity Dashboard, click here.