Indiana’s unemployment rate ticked up to 4.1 percent in February, the state’s Department of Workforce Development said Friday, due to gains in the number of people seeking employment.
The rate had been at 4 percent in January and February after falling from 4.2 percent in November, 4.4 percent in October and 4.5 percent in September.
Indiana’s labor force —which is composed of both employed and unemployed-but-willing-to-work residents—increased by 7,912 workers in February, to more than 3.32 million, thanks to an increase of 6,394 in employment and 1,518 rise in unemployment, the state said.
Indiana’s labor-force participation rate—the percentage of the state’s population that is either employed or actively seeking work—rose two-tenths of a point, to 64.4 percent, in February. It remains well above the national rate of 63 percent.
The state saw a gain of 4,400 private-sector jobs during the month. Private-sector employment has grown by more than 33,000 over the past year.
February saw private-sector gains the sectors of Manufacturing (4,200) and Trade, Transportation & Utilities (2,300) and losses in Leisure & Hospitality (-3,600).
Indiana’s unemployment rate in February was far lower than the rate in neighboring states Kentucky (4.9 percent), Ohio (5.1 percent), Michigan (5.3 percent) and Illinois (5.4 percent).
The national unemployment rate was 4.7 percent in February.
The Labor Department said Friday that unemployment rates fell sharply in 10 states in February and rose significantly in Massachusetts, with little change in the other 39.