Lansing – Seasonally unadjusted unemployment rates rose seasonally in all of Michigan’s 17 major labor market areas in December, according to the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget. Total employment and labor force levels declined in nearly all regions in December.
From November to December, seasonal unemployment rate hikes ranged from 0.2 of a percentage point to two full percentage points, with a median advance of 0.8 of a percentage point. The largest over-the-month increases were posted in the state’s three northernmost labor markets (the Upper Peninsula, the Northeast and Northwest Lower Michigan regions), with advances in the 1.4 to 2.0 percentage point range. The smallest December rate increases occurred in the Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Ann Arbor, and Lansing-East Lansing Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs), with the rates in these areas moving upwards by 0.5 of a percentage point or less. Even with the jobless rate advances in December, 15 of the state’s 17 regions continued to register rates below 10.0 percent.
Annual Average Jobless Rates Down Over Year
Preliminary annual average data indicate that unemployment rates from 2010 to 2011 fell in all 17 major Michigan regions. Over-the-year rate drops ranged from -1.5 (Ann Arbor MSA) to -3.1 (Muskegon-Norton Shores MSA) percentage points with an average reduction of -2.2 percentage points. The lowest 2011 annual jobless rate of 6.6 percent was recorded in the Ann Arbor MSA, while the highest annual rate of 12.6 percent was registered in the Northeast Lower Michigan region.
County Jobless Rates Up Over Month, Down Over Year
All of Michigan’s 83 counties recorded seasonal unemployment rate increases in December, with a median advance of 1.3 percentage points. Most of the larger over-the-month jobless rate gains were in Michigan’s northern counties. In December, 17 counties in the state had jobless rates below the national seasonally unadjusted rate of 8.3 percent.
From December 2010 to December 2011, unemployment rates fell in all Michigan counties. The median rate drop over the year was nearly 2.0 percentage points.
In Branch County the December unemployment rate was 8.8 percent, up from 8.1 percent in November, but down from 10.9 percent in December 2010.
In Cass County the jobless rate in December was 9.1 percent, up considerably from 7.8 percent in November, but lower than the rate of 11.2 percent recorded in December 2010.
And in St. Joseph County the unemployment rate in December was 9.2 percent, an increase from 8.3 percent in November, but down from 11.2 percent in December 2010.
For detailed analysis regarding Southwest Michigan, click on the following link: December 2011 labor market analysis – Southwest MI.
Source: News releases from the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget