County unemployment rate increases

July’s unemployment rate in St. Joseph County was 1.7 percent higher than the previous month.

The monthly labor-market analysis by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget showed the county’s 5.4 percent July unemployment rate marked an increase from June’s 3.7 percent.

St. Joseph County was above the state unemployment average, which was 4.8 percent in July.

The agency said summer layoffs of support staff in the education sector had a moderate impact in St. Joseph County. The seasonal loss of education-related jobs was partially offset by leisure and hospitality employment.

Allegan County featured the lowest unemployment rate in the region in July, at 3.7 percent.

Meanwhile, St. Joseph County had the region’s highest.

Cass County’s unemployment rate for the month was 4.7 percent.

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