MASON CITY, Iowa - As more of the county has worked towards reopening, so have those who are looking for work.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, the nation's unemployment rate fell to 11.1%, as 4.8 million jobs were added in June, two months after more than 20 million jobs were lost. In addition, weekly jobless claims from last week totaled 1.314 million, lower than what economists predicted.
Scott Ball with American Industrial Staffing works primarily with connecting manufacturing and construction outfits with potential employees. He has not yet seen a large increase in people coming in looking for work, as he credits that to economic uncertainty, as well as expanded unemployment benefits, such as the $600 per week benefit as part of the US CARES Act, are allowing those unemployed to make ends meet. However, he predicts that to change soon.
"I think in the second half [of this year], people will start looking. Those federal dollars run out at the end of July."
He notes of a few industries that are prime for hiring, including the food and agriculture industries, as well as manufacturing, and is hopeful that the economy will rebound.
"Some of the manufacturing stuff will start picking up, based off of what's out there and what needs to be done, and what needs to be coming."