ESCANABA - The unemployment rate in the Upper Peninsula in July rose slightly to 9.5 percent, edging up by 0.4 of a percentage point over the previous month.
Delta, Menominee, and Schoolcraft counties all saw an increase in their July unemployment rates compared to June, but all of their numbers are down from one year ago.
Schoolcraft County's unemployment rate remains the highest in the central U.P. at 11.3 percent - up from one month ago when it was at 10.7 percent. However, this number is down from July 2011's rate of 11.9.
Delta County's rate rose from 8.9 in June to 9.4 percent in July 2012, down from July 2011's rate of 10.2.
In Menominee County, the unemployment rate increased by 0.6 percentage points to 7.8 for July 2012, down from 8.0 one year ago.
Jobless rates increased in July in 10 of the 15 U.P. counties, with modest rate gains ranging from 0.3 to 0.7 percentage points. Keweenaw, Mackinac, and Gogebic counties each registered reductions in jobless rates during the month, with Keweenaw County reporting the largest drop at 1.9 percentage points. Alger and Ontonagon counties posted no rate change in July. Michigan's non-seasonally adjusted jobless rate increased in July at a faster pace than the U.P., rising by 1.1 percentage points to 10.3 percent.
In July, Mackinac County recorded the lowest unemployment rate in Michigan at 4.2 percent. The highest jobless rate in Michigan was registered by Baraga County at 16.3 percent. Other Upper Peninsula counties with relatively high jobless rates included Ontonagon County (13.3 percent), Schoolcraft County (11.3 percent), Gogebic County (11.2 percent), and Luce County (11.0 percent).
Job advances in July in the Upper Peninsula are usually observed in seasonal industry sectors such as construction and accommodation and food services.
Over the past year, the unemployment rate in the Upper Peninsula has contracted by -0.6 percentage points. Jobless rates fell in 14 regional counties since July 2011, with the largest rate cuts experienced in Ontonagon County (-2.5 percentage points) and Keweenaw and Baraga counties (-2.1 percentage points). Marquette County's jobless rate remained unchanged over the year, holding steady at 9.2 percent.
The Upper Peninsula's not seasonally adjusted July 2012 unemployment rate of 9.5 percent was lower than Michigan's average rate of 10.3 percent, but higher than the national rate of 8.6 percent.