Unemployment rate unchanged

The January unemployment rate in St. Joseph County was unchanged compared to a month earlier.

The monthly labor-market analysis by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget showed St. Joseph County’s 6.9 percent January unemployment rate was equal to December’s figure.

January’s unemployment rate was 1.7 percent less than the same month one year earlier, when the figure was 8.6 percent.

St. Joseph County remained below the state unemployment average, which was 8.1 percent in January.

January saw cuts in the seasonal, retail-job sector. In addition, employment in education declined due to the two-week Christmas break, according to the agency.

At 6 percent, Kalamazoo County had the region’s lowest unemployment rate in January, while Van Buren County had the highest, with 9.4 percent.

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