County unemployment up

January’s unemployment rate in St. Joseph County was six-tenths of a percent higher than the previous month.

The monthly labor-market analysis by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget showed the county’s 4.3 percent January unemployment rate marked an increase from December’s 3.7 percent.

St. Joseph County was below the state unemployment average, which was 5.3 percent in January.

The agency said almost all major industry groups recorded employment reductions, including state and local education, retail, food services, and professional and business services.

Despite its unemployment increase from the previous month, St. Joseph County had the lowest unemployment rate in the eight-county Southwest Region.

Meanwhile, Van Buren County had the region’s highest, at 7.4 percent unemployment for the month.

Cass County’s unemployment rate for January was 5.4 percent.

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