State unemployment rate ticks up to 3.6 percent

Indiana’s unemployment rate ticked up to 3.6 percent in November after three consecutive months at 3.5 percent as the state’s labor force continued to grow.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development released its latest unemployment report Friday.
Indiana’s labor force—which is composed of both employed and unemployed-but-willing-to-work residents—increased by 2,216 workers from October to November, to 3.4 million.

Indiana’s labor-force participation rate—the percentage of the state’s population that is either employed or actively seeking work—stayed at 65.1 percent in November. It remains ahead of the national rate of 62.9 percent.

The national unemployment rate for November was 3.7 percent. With the exception of one month when it was equal (October 2014), Indiana's unemployment rate has been below the U.S. rate for more than five years.

Private sector employment in Indiana grew by 2,800 in November over the previous month and is up more than 25,900 over the year, the state said.

November job gains were seen in the sectors of Manufacturing (3,100) and Private Educational and Health Services (1,900). Losses were seen in Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-2,000) and the Leisure and Hospitality sector (-1,000).

Total private employment reached a preliminary record high point of 2,714,800, which is 25,900 above the official December 2017 peak.

The unemployment rate in Indiana for November was lower than the rates in neighboring states Michigan (3.9 percent), Illinois (4.2 percent), Ohio (4.6 percent) and Kentucky (4.5 percent).

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