01/29/14 Indiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped 0.4 percent to 6.9 percent in December and is now at the lowest point since October 2008 (6.8 percent). The rate of unemployment in Indiana remains below all neighboring states. One of the major factors in Indiana’s unemployment rated decline is the number of individuals returning to the labor force. The Hoosier labor force increased by nearly 6,000 in December and has grown by more than 21,000 over the past three months.
Following a historic month of job growth in November (+25,000), Indiana’s private sector contracted, as expected, by 4,800 jobs. The Hoosier State ended 2013 showing a total increase of 42,600 jobs over the year. Indiana has now added over 217,000 private sector jobs and continues to outpace the national average for job growth (9.3% versus 6.8%) since July 2009, the low point of employment.
Marshall County’s December rate dropped to 6.8% from 7.4% in November. Taking a look at the counties surrounding Marshall you’ll find St. Joseph at 7.5 a reduction from 8.3 the previous month. Elkhart County also saw a reduction from 7.6 to 6.7 and even Kosciusko saw a decline in their unemployment rate from6.0 to 5.2. Fulton County’s rate reduced from 7.4% to 6.9% and Starke County dropped to 7.7 from 8.1. LaPorte also had a drop in unemployment rates from November to December…8.9% down to 8.3%.
“There are fewer Hoosiers unemployed (218,000) now than in the past five year,” said Scott B. Sanders, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. “Just as important is the fact more than 21,000 folks have returned to the labor force over the past three months, which is unique in the Midwest. Although Hoosiers are encouraged the economy is improving and there are jobs available, there still is more work to be done.”
Sanders also noted claims for unemployment insurance continue to be a their lowest levels since 2000.
Sectors showing gains in December include: Professional and Business Services (200), Sectors showing decline in December include: Financial Activities (-400), Private educational & Health Services (-100), Trade, Transportation, & Utilities (-1,300), Construction (-1,300), Manufacturing (-1,700) and Leisure and Hospitality (-900).