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Unemployment rate rises in October

November 21, 2008

Indiana's jobless rate rose to 6.4 percent in October from 6.2 percent in September, according to figures released today by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

Unemployment was well over the 4.8 percent of a year earlier. Still, the department emphasized that Indiana was below the national rate of 6.5 percent and below all neighboring states.

The figures are adjusted for seasonal fluctuations and subject to revision.

The rate for the Indianapolis area, which is not seasonally adjusted, increased to 5.2 percent from 3.7 percent in October 2007.

The seasonally adjusted number of jobs in the state fell 0.2 percent in October, to 2,962,500, compared with September. That's down 1.1 percent from October 2007.

Indiana employment is being dragged down primarily by manufacturing. The sector shed 5,500 jobs in October, down 1 percent from the prior month, and 26,500 from a year earlier, a drop of 4.8 percent.

Manufacturers making products ranging from auto parts to truck trailers to recreational vehicles laid off swaths of workers as the economy sank deeper into recession and consumers and businesses alike slowed spending.

Helping to blunt the manufacturing losses were gains in finance, private education and health services.

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