March 2011 Unemployment Picture Improves


March Unemployment Picture Improves Slightly

April 19, 2011                                                                                                               Contact:  Mark Wickersham
Huntington, Indiana                                                                                                        260-356-5688

According to data released today by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, the Huntington County Unemployment Rate for March of 2011 (covering the period from February 11 – March 10, 2011) stood at 9.3%, having improved from 9.9% in February and 11.4% in January of 2011.

124 Huntington County residents found new employment opportunities during the March reporting period while 111 fewer Huntington County residents were unemployed compared to the previous month as reported by the State.  The overall data for 2011 indicates that 452 fewer Huntington County residents are unemployed compared to the January 2011 reporting period. 

“The Huntington County unemployment rate is beginning to track more closely to the State-wide average which is now at 8.8%,” said Mark Wickersham, Executive Director of Huntington County Economic Development.  “Historically, our County has been nearly 2% higher than the State-wide average.   While the general situation is still very fragile, anytime we see any kind of improvement in the statistics, it’s an encouraging sign,” he added.

“Huntington County is not immune from the World’s problems - rising energy costs, automotive supply chain challenges resulting from the situation in Japan, increased freight costs as a result of instability around the Suez Canal and policy fights in Washington, DC - however, we have a very strong base of employers and an excellent workforce in Huntington County who are working very, very hard to succeed.  It is also very helpful that we have a collaborative, team approach to economic development in our County, ” Wickersham concluded.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development report contains the following disclaimer –

                 “These estimates are prepared in cooperation with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 
                  and have been adjusted to the current population survey (CPS) for use
                  in allocating federal funds.  Because of irregular fluctuations in month to month
                  changes, the reader should use caution when viewing these estimates as indicators
                  of economic change.”

As an additional disclosure, the reader should understand that the statistics are based on the “County of Residence” of the worker not the “County of Employment.”  For example, if a resident of Huntington County is displaced from an employer located in Allen County, the unemployment rate for Huntington County increases.  The result is that the Huntington County statistics are not specifically and exclusively a measure of the strength of employers located in Huntington County.