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July unemployment up for IN, mixed locally

Indiana’s unemployment rate rose slightly during July. The latest figures show the percentage of Hoosiers looking for work went from eight in June to 8.2 last month.

In Tippecanoe County, unemployment dropped from 8% to 7.7%. Lafayette’s jobless rate rose 0.1% to 8.4%. West Lafayette’s figure stands at 5.8%, which is down slightly from June.

Despite the increase for Lafayette, unemployment in the city is 1% better than it was a year ago.

Along with Tippecanoe, Clinton County also saw its jobless rate improve slightly from June to July. Montgomery and White counties’ rates were steady, while Benton, Carroll, Fountain and Warren counties’ employment pictures worsened in July.

You can see the specific numbers here.

The following news release was issued by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development about the July numbers:

For the ninth consecutive month Indiana added private sector jobs, with July’s increase totaling 3,300. For 2012, the rate of job growth in the Hoosier state (1.7 percent) continues to exceed the U.S. average (1.0 percent). Since July 2009, the low point of employment, Indiana has added more than 143,000 private sector jobs and has significantly outpaced the national rate of growth during this period, (6.2 percent versus 3.4 percent). Over the same period, manufacturing jobs in the Hoosier state have increased by more than 60,000, or by 14.1 percent. 

Total nonfarm employment in Indiana also increased by 10,700 in July, with 7,600 of the jobs coming from the government sector, which had a decrease of 6,700 jobs in June. Another anomaly was the federal government’s analysis of Indiana’s unemployment rate, which increased to 8.2 percent based on a 1,000 household survey showing over 25,000 Hoosiers that worked in June were not working in July and no longer in the labor force.

“We have raised several questions with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics about discrepancies in June and July’s labor force data,” said Scott B. Sanders, Commissioner of the Department of Workforce Development. “The numbers seem to indicate nearly 46,000 Hoosiers went from gainfully employed in May to missing from the labor force in July, with no explanation.” 

Sanders also noted that while monthly data is volatile, the more reliable long-term numbers show Indiana is still significantly outperforming the U.S. average for private sector job growth (1.7 percent versus 1.0 percent), manufacturing growth (3.2 percent versus 1.5 percent) and nearly every other employment sector in 2012.