Unemployment rate stays low

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    HANCOCK COUNTY — Hancock County’s unemployment rate remained among the lowest in the state, according to data released this week.

    The county had an estimated 3.1 percent of its labor force unemployed in July, the same rate as July 2017, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development announced Monday. The labor force, however, grew 3 percent in a year, adding more than 1,000 employed workers and fewer than 50 unemployed residents.

    Hancock County ranked in the top third of low unemployment rates for Indiana counties in July, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Only neighboring Hamilton and Rush counties had better rates of 2.8 percent and 2.9 percent, respectively. Madison, Henry, Shelby and Marion counties all had higher rates than Hancock County. Those range from 3.2 percent in Shelby County to 3.8 percent in Madison County.

    Indiana’s non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.5 percent for July, lower than the national rate of 4.1 percent and slightly improved from July 2017’s 3.6 percent rate. Indiana’s unemployment has been below or equal to the U.S. rate for more than four years, the DWD stated in a news release.

    The state’s labor force of 3.38 million increased by 15,564 workers, mostly employed. A labor force is the combined number of employed workers and unemployed residents actively looking for a job.

    As part of Monday’s news release, DWD analysts reminded the public that a county’s unemployment estimate shouldn’t be compared to the prior month’s rate because of seasonal events, weather, holidays and school schedules. They advise comparison to the same month from previous years.

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    Labor force: 40,641

    Employed: 39,370

    Unemployed: 1,271

    Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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    How Hancock County’s unemployment rate ranks in the area

    Hancock County: 3.1 percent

    Madison County: 3.8 percent

    Hamilton County: 2.8 percent

    Henry County: 3.6 percent

    Rush County: 2.9 percent

    Shelby County: 3.2 percent

    Marion County: 3.6 percent

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