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U.P. jobless rates improve

September 28, 2012
The Daily News

MARQUETTE - The jobless rate in the Upper Peninsula declined in August to 8.4 percent, a monthly drop of 1.1 percentage points, said Michigan Department Of Technology, Management & Budget officials.

During August, jobless rates decreased in all but one of the Upper Peninsula's 15 counties.

Keweenaw County experienced a jobless rate hike of 0.7 percentage points to 9.0 percent.

During August, the largest jobless rate decline was reported by Baraga County ( down 1.9 percentage points), followed by Schoolcraft, Gogebic and Houghton counties all decreasing by 1.5 percentage points.

The Michigan not seasonally adjusted jobless rate also moved down during August, falling 1.1 percentage points to 9.2 percent.

Mackinac County registered the lowest unemployment rate in Michigan in August at 3.8 percent, and below average rates were also posted by Menominee and Dickinson counties with 7.2 and 7.4 percent, respectively.

The highest jobless rate in Michigan was recorded by Baraga County at 14.3 percent. Other Upper Peninsula counties with high jobless rates included Ontonagon County (12.1 percent) and Luce County (10.3 percent).

Dickinson County's unemployment was 7.4 percent in August, down from 8.6 percent in July. The August 2011 jobless rate in Dickinson County was 8.3 percent. Some 1,000 Dickinson County residents are unemployed.

The jobless rate in Iron County was 7.8 percent in August comparted to 8.8 percent in July. The unemployment rate in August 2011 was 8.7 percent. Officials said 425 Iron County residents are unemployed.

The drop in August jobless rates in many Upper Peninsula counties was primarily related to a seasonal reduction in the number of individuals actively looking for work.

Payroll jobs in the Upper Peninsula tend to increase during August, and these gains are generally concentrated in construction, professional and technical services and sectors related to the recreation and tourism industries such as accommodation and food services, officials said.

Since August 2011 the unemployment rate in the Upper Peninsula has declined by 0.8 percentage points.

Over the year, jobless rates fell in all 15 U.P. counties. The largest rate reductions were posted in Ontonagon and Baraga counties, both down by 2.7 percentage points, Gogebic County (down 1.4 percentage points), Schoolcraft County (down 1.3 percentage points) and Delta County (down 1.1 percentage points).

The Upper Peninsula's not seasonally adjusted August 2012 unemployment rate of 8.4 percent remained lower than the Michigan rate of 9.2 percent, and was comparable to the national rate of 8.2 percent.



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