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IN unemployment rate drops in August

Indiana’s unemployment rate had its biggest single-month drop in more than two years, but the state’s private sector also lost nearly three thousand jobs in August.

Indiana’s unemployment rate dropped to 8.1% last month, its lowest level in nearly a year.  And both the manufacturing and private educational and health services sectors made significant gains, each adding 3,000 jobs.  But the state’s private sector as a whole lost 2,900 jobs in August.  And July’s employment numbers were revised downward, reflecting significant private sector job loss.

University of Indianapolis economist Matt Will says the economy continues to send mixed messages.

“I see some good news in manufacturing; I see some bad news in construction.  I see some good news in the percentage being down; I see some bad news in the private sector dropping.  So I wouldn’t say it’s overall bad; I’d say it’s overall confusing.”

Will says job losses in the transportation, construction and hospitality and leisure sectors concern him because he says those are sectors that lead a growing economy. 

The unemployment in Tippecanoe and surrounding counties fell from July to August – as much as 1.5% or more in some places.

Benton and Tippecanoe counties saw the sharpest decline. Both have a jobless rate below 7%, which is the same for Carroll, Clinton, Warren and White counties. Fountain County continues to have the highest rate in the area, with 8.9% of its work force out of a job.

Lafayette’s jobless rate dropped to 7.4%, while West Lafayette’s rate is down to 5% for August.

  • Benton Co.  6.9%,  down 1.5%
  • Carroll Co.  6.7%,  down 0.9%
  • Clinton Co.  6.8%,  down 1.0%
  • Fountain Co.  8.9%,  down 1.0%
  • Montgomery Co.  7.3%,  down 0.7%
  • Tippecanoe Co.  6.8%,  down 1.6%
  • Warren Co.  6.9%,  down 0.9%
  • White Co.  6.6%,  down 0.7%
Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.
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