Jobless rate up in July

LISBON – Columbiana County’s unemployment rate increased in July for a second consecutive month.

The jobless rate last month was 6.5 percent, an increase of 0.3 percent, according to figures released Tuesday by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

The county’s unemployment rate had been steadily on the decline until June, when it increased for the first time since January.

Meanwhile, Ohio’s unemployment rate increased from 5.5 percent in June to 5.7 percent last month, while the national rate also increased in July, by 0.1 percent to 6.2 percent.

The number of county residents without jobs increased by 100 last month, to 3,300. The number of new filings for benefits in July totaled 381 compared to 377 in June, with an average benefit payment of $308 per week.

None of this should come as a surprise since Ohio led the nation in jobs lost last month – 12,400 – followed by Maryland, which lost 9,000 jobs. The state ranked third in percentage of jobs lost, at 0.2 percent.

The states with the most jobs gained in July were Texas, 46,600; California, 27,700; and Michigan, 17,900.

Only eight states lost jobs, while 30 gained jobs and 12 states and the District of Columbia recorded no change.

The government uses a survey of mostly large businesses and government agencies to determine how many jobs are added or lost each month, whereas the unemployment rate is an estimate based on a formula that includes the number of people receiving benefits and a phone survey of 50,000 households.

Among the adjoining counties, Columbiana’s unemployment rate was higher than Carroll (5.8 percent) and Stark (5.7 percent) but lower than Jefferson (8 percent) and Mahoning (6.8 percent).

The county’s unemployment rate was the 28th highest among Ohio’s 88 counties, with Mercer County along the Indiana border again registering the lowest jobless rate, at 3.3 percent. The highest unemployment rate again belonged go Monroe County in southern Ohio along the Ohio River, at 12.2 percent.