Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Jobless rate shows little change in May, benefits maximum is cut

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By KEVIN NEVERS

The state’s jobless rate remained unchanged in May at 8.2 percent, the same as in April, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) said in a statement released on Friday.

The U.S. rate, meanwhile, rose to 9.1 percent from 9.0 percent in April.

“Indiana continues to be below the national average and that of all neighboring states for the fourth month in a row,” DWD said.

“The steady improvement in the unemployment rate means the state is no longer eligible for a portion of federally funded extended benefits,” DWD Commissioner Mark Everson said. “As a result, Hoosiers will be eligible for up to 93 weeks of unemployment insurance benefits instead of 99 weeks. This is still well above the maximum of benefits offered in any previous recession, the highest being 55 weeks in 1983.”

“Due to the state’s three-month average unemployment rate falling below 8.5 percent, weeks 73-79 of unemployment benefits, also known as Tier IV, are no longer available,” DWD said. “Only states with a three-month average unemployment rate above 8.5 percent are eligible. Hoosiers currently receiving these benefits will be allowed to finish, but new claims will not be accepted beginning Sunday, July 10. Individuals who exhaust Tier III after this date may apply for an additional 20 weeks of extended benefits.”

More information is available at www.in.gov/dwd

Sectors showing significant employment gains in May were private education and health services (+1,900); financial activities (+1,900); leisure and hospitality (+1,400); and construction (+500).

Sectors showing significant employment losses were trade, transportation, and utilities sector (-3,400); and government (-6,900).

Total non-farm employment decreased by 5,200 in May.

Locally, Regionally

In Northwest Indiana, unemployment rates generally remain stable or otherwise increased.

The unemployment rate in Porter County in May increased to 7.2 percent from 7.0 percent in April (8.7 percent in May 2010). Across Porter County 5,770 people were looking for work in May, compared to 5,565 in April, an increase of 3.7 percent (a decrease of 19.2 percent since May 2010).

In Lake County the unemployment rate in May rose to 9.0 percent from 8.9 percent in April (10.7 percent in May 2010). In LaPorte County the unemployment rate in May dropped to 9.4 percent from 9.6 percent in April (11.8 percent in May 2010).

Chesterton, on the other hand, once again posted the lowest rate in the region in May, 6.6 percent, down from 6.7 percent in April (8.0 percent in May 2010). A total of 431 people was looking for jobs in May, compared to 435 in April, a decrease of 0.9 percent (a decrease of 18.5 percent since May 2010).

In Valparaiso the unemployment rate in May increased to 6.7 percent from 6.4 percent in April (8.5 percent in May 2010). A total of 1,016 people was looking for jobs in May, compared to 952 in April, an increase of 6.7 percent (a decrease of 22.3 percent since May 2010).

In Portage the unemployment rate in May was unchanged, 8.9 percent, the same as in April (9.8 percent in May 2010). A total of 1,589 people was looking for work in May, compared to 1,585 in April, an increase of 0.25 percent (a decrease of 10.1 percent since May 2010).

Unemployment elsewhere in May:

•In Gary the rate rose by fully half a point, to 11.6 percent from 11.1 percent in April (12.1 in May 2010).

•In East Chicago the rate dropped by nearly half a point, to 12.0 from 12.4 percent in April (14.1 percent in May 2010).

•In Hammond the rate rose by half a point, to 9.3 percent from 8.8 percent in April (12.3 percent in May 2010).

•In Michigan City the rate increased to 10.7 percent from 10.6 percent in April (12.2 percent in May 2010).

•In LaPorte the rate increased to 10.1 percent from 9.8 percent in April (13.1 percent in May 2010).

Alternative Measures

The official unemployment rate in May rose to 9.1 percent from 9.0 percent in April (9.3 percent in May 2010).

But—according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics—if “discouraged workers,” “all other marginally attached workers,” and “total employed part-time for economic reasons” are included in the tally, the unofficial unemployment rate in May was 15.8 percent, down from 15.9 percent in April (16.1 percent in May 2010).

“Marginally attached workers” are those “who indicate that they want a job, have looked for work in the last 12 months (or since the last time they worked if they worked in the last 12 months), and are available for work.”

“Discouraged workers” are not currently looking for work for several reasons, including their belief that no job is available for them in their line of work or in their area.

“Persons employed part-time for economic reasons” are those “who want and are available for full-time work but have had to settle for a part-time schedule.”

 

 

 

Posted 6/20/2011

 

 

 

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