2013-08-01 / Community

Area unemployment sees slight increase in June

Half percent jump in county, less in others

MANISTIQUE – During the month of June, the unemployment rate in Schoolcraft County jumped from 12.6 percent in June to 13.1 percent. The rate for the entire Upper Peninsula was little changed, edging up by just 0.1 of a percentage point to 9.6 percent.

The number of employed and unemployed rose seasonally in June. During the month, unemployment rates increased in eight of the U.P.’s 15 counties with monthly gains ranging from 0.1 of a percentage point (Houghton and Luce counties) to 0.5 of a percentage point (Chippewa and Schoolcraft counties). Among the counties reporting jobless rate reductions, Iron County had the smallest drop of 0.2 of a percentage point, while the largest reduction was posted by Keweenaw County, down by 1.8 percentage points.

Mackinac County (5.2 percent) posted the lowest jobless rate in Michigan during June. Relatively low jobless rates were also recorded in Menominee and Dickinson counties at 6.3 and 8.1 percent, respectively. Baraga County reported the highest jobless rate in Michigan in June of 17.9 percent. Above average rates also occurred in Ontonagon County (14.0 percent) and Schoolcraft County (13.1 percent).

Job advances in the U.P. during June typically occur in construction, and industries associated with the arrival of the tourism and recreation season, such as retail, transportation, recreational services and accommodation and food services. However, seasonal summer job gains in these sectors were not large enough to accommodate all of the new entrants to the local labor market, causing jobless rates to edge up in some counties.

Since June 2012, the U.P. jobless rate inched up by 0.3 of a percentage point. Over the year, jobless rates increased in 12 of the 15 regional counties, with the largest rate gains in Keweenaw and Baraga counties, up by 2.3 and 1.8 percentage points, respectively. Menominee County had the only significant rate decline since June 2012.

The U.P.’s not seasonally adjusted June 2013 unemployment rate of 9.6 percent was slightly higher than the Michigan rate of 9.4 percent, and substantially higher than the national rate of 7.8 percent.

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