Dec 08, 2016 05:38 AM EST

Rural Employment Rate Growing In The United States: $5 Billion Investment In Rural Economies Pays off

By JC Santos

A $5 billion investment in rural economies since 2009 has helped the United States drive down unemployment rates. Further survey data reveals that about 60 percent of rural counties saw employment rise from the first half of 2015 up to 2016.  Higher employee numbers required to ensure employment rate growth in the future.

According to, citing the Economic Research Service, about 70 percent of Iowa's counties are at their lowest unemployment rates since 2007. Figures from the USDA's Department of Rural Development supplement the information. Majority of Iowa's 1.7 million population live in rural communities.

According to Iowa State Director of Rural Development Bill Menner, a development investment worth $5 billion into rural economies has helped boost the local economies since 2009. The $600 million annual funding has helped improve local businesses and introduce innovation in Iowa. Menner believes that it would help lead rural county economies as it moves forward.

Iowa -- along with the rest of the United States -- is experiencing massive employment growth in 2016. Figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal the economy has added 178,000 jobs the previous month with a low unemployment rate of 4.6%. While the cornerstone industry manufacturing has lost more than 4,000 jobs due to technological developments, according to, it was because employees were moving out from that market that technology and automation would soon take over.

US President-Elect Donald Trump had also helped manufacturing avoid an immense tip-over. After discussions with one of the biggest US air-conditioning and appliance manufacturer Carrier, Trump had confirmed that 1,000 jobs from the manufacturing plant is staying. The public has called for the closing of the plants to reduce consequences of manufacturing byproducts contributing to global warming.

The increase of employment is offset by the lack of increase in wages. Average hourly earnings are still $25.89 across the United States.

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