Putnam posts identical jobless figure as Indiana at 5.7 for April

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

As Putnam County goes, so goes the state of Indiana in the latest unemployment report issued by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development

Indiana's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased 0.2 percent to 5.7 percent for April, which is precisely the same figure Putnam County posted for the month. The Putnam number was the 52nd best rating among the 92 Hoosier counties.

The 5.7 percent mark represents a significant improvement for Putnam County, which posted a March jobless rate of 7.0 percent and an 8.6 percent figure for February.

Putnam's April figures again fared better than three neighboring counties as Owen County, at 6.8 percent, tied for 12th worst (or 80th best) last month and Parke and Clay counties again found themselves in the bottom third of the state rankings.

For April, Clay was tied for 61st at 6.1 percent, while Parke was at 6.0 percent, good enough for a tie for 56th best.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, meanwhile, neighboring Hendricks County, an ever-present top-10 county, was tied for sixth overall at 4.2 percent for April.

Montgomery, at 5.1 percent, tied for the 39th, while Morgan was 44th at 5.3 percent in the latest state jobless rankings.

Indiana's best unemployment figure is owned by Dubois County at 3.5 percent with Hamilton just a tick back at 3.6 percent for second, followed by Daviess at 3.8 percent, Bartholomew fourth at 3.9 percent and Koscuisko fifth at 4.1.

Rounding out the April top 10 are Knox and Boone, tied with Hendricks in sixth at 4.2, followed by LaGrange at 4.3 and an eight-way tie for 10th between Whitley, Switzerland, Pulaski, Monroe, Jackson, Hancock, Gibson and Adams counties.

Landing at the bottom of April's Hoosier jobless rankings were Vermillion at 8.2 percent, followed by Fayette and Lake at 7.6 and Jasper, LaPorte and Vigo, all at 7.3 percent.

Completing the April bottom 10 are Lawrence at 7.2 and Miami at 7.0 with Crawford, Starke and Washington all tied for 10th at 6.9.

Last month marked the ninth in a row of unemployment rate declines in the Hoosier State. Indiana's unemployment rate has decreased by 2.1 percent over the past year and has remained below the national rate for the past four months.

The Hoosier state also added 4,400 private sector jobs in April. Since July 2009, the low point of employment in the state, Indiana has added a total of 220,300 private sector jobs, one-third of which have come from the manufacturing sector alone (+75,200).

Indiana's labor force increased by 11,700 in April, marking the seventh straight month of labor force growth. Additionally, Indiana's labor force participation rate exceeded the national rate in April for the first time since July 2009.

"April's job numbers maintained the positive economic trend for 2014 in the Hoosier State," said Scott B. Sanders, commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. "Indiana's unemployment rate continues to drop because more Hoosiers are going back to work as our labor force continues to grow, which is not the case with some of our neighboring states or the national trend as a whole."

Sanders also noted claims for state unemployment insurance in April were nearly 10,000 below April 2013 levels. Initial claims and continued claims are now at levels not seen since 2000.

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