Chesterton Tribune

 

 

Jobless rate down marginally in state while figures mixed here

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Indiana’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate fell by nearly a full point from the past three months to 7.5 percent, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) said today.

That drop signifies the largest three-month drop in more than 20 years.

Indiana began the year with a rate of 8.6 percent and was at 8.4 percent in July. The last time Indiana’s unemployment rate was below 8 percent was November 2008.

Private sector employment in Indiana grew by 6,600 jobs in October, while its rate of private sector growth (8.4 percent) has continued to significantly outpace the national average (6.5 percent) since July 2009, the low point of employment in Indiana, DWD said.

“Indiana’s unemployment rate is more than one percentage point below where it was in January, which is definitely significant,” DWD Commissioner Scott Sanders said. “The steady private sector job growth the Hoosier State has been experiencing for some time now is finally beginning to be reflected in the unemployment rate, which many businesses and individuals rely on to make important economic decisions.”

Meanwhile, the number of unemployed Hoosiers has decreased by more than 27,000 over the past three months, while Indiana’s labor force has grown by 6,000, DWD said. “Claims for unemployment insurance this year remain at their lowest levels since 2000.”

Sectors showing gains in October included manufacturing (+3,600); construction (+1,700); and private educational and health services (+1,300).

Sectors showing losses included trade, transportation, and utilities (-800); professional and business services (-100); and leisure and hospitality (-200).

Total non-far employment increased in October (+7,300).

Regionally, Locally

In Northwest Indiana jobless rates in October were mixed.

In Porter County the seasonally unadjusted rate in October slipped to 6.9 percent, from 7.1 percent in September (7.3 percent in October 2012). Throughout the county 5,662 people were looking for work in October, a decrease of 2.4 percent from September (a decrease of 6.4 percent since October 2012).

In Lake County the unemployment rate in October rose marginally to 9.0 percent, from 8.9 percent in September (9.1 percent in October 2012). In LaPorte County the unemployment rate in October was stable at 8.6 percent, the same as in September (9.5 percent in October 2012).

In Chesterton--still with the lowest jobless rate in the region--the unemployment rate in October fell by more than half a point, to 5.8 percent from 6.4 percent in September (6.2 percent in October 2012). A total of 390 people was looking for work in October, a decrease of 8.9 percent from September (a decrease of 7.1 percent since October 2012).

In Valparaiso the unemployment rate in October dipped to 6.4 percent, from 6.6 percent in September (6.7 percent in October 2012). A total of 1.019 people was looking for work in October, a decrease of 2.8 percent from September (a decrease of 5.2 percent since October 2012).

In Portage the unemployment rate in October rose to 8.5 percent, from 8.4 percent in September (9.3 percent in October 2012). A total of 1,521 people was looking for work in October, an increase of 1.5 percent over September (a decrease of 9.7 percent since October 2012).

Unemployment rates elsewhere in October:

* In Gary the rate spiked by fully half a point, to 13.3 percent from 12.8 percent in September (13.4 percent in October 2012).

* In East Chicago the rate fell to 11.5 percent, from 11.8 percent in September (13.0 percent in October 2012).

* In Hammond the rate rose to 9.8 percent, from 9.6 percent in September (9.8 percent in October 2012).

* In Michigan City the rate fell by half a point, to 9.5 percent from 10.0 percent (11.6 percent in October 2012).

* In LaPorte the rate rose by half a point, to 7.9 percent from 7.4 percent in September (8.7 percent in October 2012).

Alternative Measures

The official national unemployment rate in October was 7.3 percent, up from 7.2 percent in September (7.5 percent in October 2012).

However--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 October was 13.8 percent, up from 13.6 percent in September (13.9 percent in October 2012).

“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 to them in their line or in their area.

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

 

 

Posted 11/22/2013