Indiana’s unemployment rate has settled into a holding pattern after its sudden spike and partial recovery during the pandemic, hovering at or near 4% for the last sixth months.
The unemployment rate inched up from 4% in May to 4.1% in June, according to numbers released Friday by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. It was 3.9% in April and March, 4% in February and 4.2% in January.
It was 3.3% in March 2020, just before the pandemic triggered wide-scale layoffs and job losses. It hit 16.9% in April 2020 and then steadily descended over the course of the year.
Indiana’s recovery continued to outshine the improvement in the national rate. U.S. unemployment ticked up from 5.8% in May to 5.9% in June.
An estimated 138,192 Hoosiers are currently unemployed and seeking jobs, the state reported. That’s up from 134,593 in May and 131,101 in April.
Indiana’s labor force—which is composed of both employed and unemployed-but-willing-to-work residents—had a net increase of 4,148 over May’s tally to about 3.35 million. This was a result of an increase of 3,014 unemployed residents and an increase of 1,134 employed residents.
Indiana’s labor-force participation rate rose from 63.1% in May to 63.2% in June. It again bettered the national rate of 61.6%, which drooped from 61.7% in May.
The labor force participation rate indicates the percentage of all people of working age who are employed or are actively seeking work.
Private sector employment in Indiana in June increased by 8,900 from the previous month and is up by 123,500 over the year. Total private employment stands at 2,628,600, which is 111,900 below the December 2019 peak.
The monthly increase was due in part to job gains in the Leisure and Hospitality (8,300) and Manufacturing (4,400) sectors. Gains were offset somewhat by losses in the Professional and Business Services (-2,900) and Construction (-1,900) sectors.
Friday’s report broke out unemployment rates for six nearby states, four of which had higher unemployment rates than Indiana: Illinois (7.2%), Kentucky (4.4%), Michigan (5%) and Ohio (5.2%). Minnesota posted a 4% rate, and Wisconsin was 3.9%.