Traverse City Record-Eagle

January 25, 2013

Jobless rates rise in all Michigan labor markets


LANSING — Michigan officials said the seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate rose 1 percentage point statewide and is up in all 17 major job markets, mainly because of the usual winter downturn.

Michigan's seasonally unadjusted jobless rate hit 8.9 percent in December, up from 7.9 percent in November. When adjusted for seasonal changes, the rate remained unchanged at 8.9 percent.

December joblessness in metropolitan Detroit rose from 9.7 percent to 10.2 percent, while Grand Rapids saw an increase from 5.4 percent to 6.5 percent. The Upper Peninsula's rate rose from 7.5 percent to 9.4 percent.

In the 10-county region of northwestern Lower Michigan that includes Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmet, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, Manistee, Missaukee and Wexford counties, unemployment went from 8.2 percent in November to 10.1 percent in December. Among counties in the region, Leelanau and Grand Traverse had the lowest unemployment rates for December, both at 8 percent in the 19th and 20th place of 83 counties. Emmet was the highest in the region, at 73 out of 83,with 12.7 percent.

The Department of Technology, Management & Budget says the main factor is a typical winter employment decline. It said the job picture improved for the year in all 17 markets. In northwestern Lower Michigan, unemployment went from 11.1 percent in 2011 to 9.5 percent in 2012. Statewide, unemployment was at 10.3 percent in 2011, and 8.9 percent in 2012.