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Local jobless rate edges up

July 28, 2012
Daily Press

ESCANABA - During June 2012, the jobless rate in the Upper Peninsula increased seasonally to 9.1 percent, a monthly gain of 0.6 of a percentage points. Locally, Delta, Menominee, and Schoolcraft counties all saw an increase in the jobless rate from last month, but experienced a decrease from one year ago.

Delta County's June 2012 jobless rate increased 0.7 of a percentage point from 8.2 in May to 8.9 in June. However, this figure is down from June 2011's rate of 10 percent.

Menominee County has also seen an increased unemployment rate from 6.7 to 7.1 percent from May to June, another figure down from one year ago when unemployment was at 8 percent.

A small increase in Schoolcraft County brought the jobless rate from 10.4 to 10.7 percent over the same period, but a decrease from June 2011's jobless rate, which sat at 12.1 percent.

Jobless rates in June moved upward in 11 of the 15 U.P. counties, with monthly rate hikes ranging from 0.1 of a percentage point in Baraga and Ontonagon counties to 1.3 percentage points in Marquette County.

Most county jobless rate increases reflected seasonal additions in the number of persons in the UP workforce, with employment and the number of unemployed both rising in June. However, the jobless rate increase in Marquette County was partially related to layoffs in the mining industry. Mackinac, Keweenaw, Alger and Iron counties each registered monthly reductions in jobless rates, with Mackinac County reporting the largest drop at 1.6 percentage points.

Mackinac County registered the lowest unemployment rate in Michigan during June at 4.5 percent. The highest jobless rate in Michigan was recorded by Baraga County at 15.8 percent. Other Upper Peninsula counties that have high jobless rates included Ontonagon County (13.3 percent) and Gogebic County (11.2 percent).

Job gains in the Upper Peninsula during June typically occur in construction, and in industries associated with the tourism and recreation season, such as retail and accommodation and food services.

Since June 2011, the Upper Peninsula jobless rate fell by 1.1 percentage points, less than the reduction recorded statewide. Over the year, jobless rates dropped in all 15 regional counties, with the largest rate reductions occurring in Baraga County (-2.8 percentage points), Luce County (-2.6 percentage points), and Ontonagon County (-2.5 percentage points).

The Upper Peninsula's not seasonally adjusted June 2012 unemployment rate of 9.1 percent was similar to the Michigan average rate of 9.2 percent, but higher than the national rate of 8.4 percent.10.7 percent



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