Adams County's unemployment rate dropped slightly in July, falling from 7.9 percent in June to 7.6 percent last month, according to the latest figures released Friday by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.
The county's jobless rate has remained below 8 percent for four consecutive months after starting 2012 at 8.5 percent. Three years ago, in July of 2009, Adams County experienced a jobless rate of 15.2 percent. One year ago that rate was 8.1 percent.
Fridays report shows July unemployment in the state of Indiana was at 8.2 percent, up from 8.0 percent in June but well below the 9.2 percent jobless rate one year earlier.
But Scott B. Sanders, commissioner of the Department of Workforce Development, said those figures have been disputed.
“We have raised several questions with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics about discrepancies in June and July’s labor force data,” said Sanders. “The numbers seem to indicate nearly 46,000 Hoosiers went from gainfully employed in May to missing from the labor force in July, with no explanation.”
Sanders said Indiana added private sector jobs for the ninth consecutive month, with July’s increase totaling 3,300. For 2012, the rate of job growth in the Hoosier state continues to exceed the U.S. average, he said.
July unemployment rates for other counties in east-central and northeast Indiana included Jay, 7.2 percent; Wells, 6.9; Allen, 7.7; Huntington, 8.2; DeKalb, 8.6; Noble, 8.8; and Whitley, 7.2 percent.
Fayette County featured the state's highest unemployment rate during July at 11.3 percent, followed by Sullivan at 11.1; Vermillion, Vigo and Wayne at 10.5; Lawrence at 10.4; Blackford and Grant at 10.3; Miami at 10.2 and Delaware at 10.0 percent.
Adams County's rate was the 32nd lowest in the state. The latest state report showed that 1,128 members of the county's total workforce of 14,899 remained without work during July.
Among neighboring states, only Ohio at 7.2 percent had a lower unemployment rate for July than did Indiana. Kentucky's unemployment rate was 8.3 percent, Michigan was 9.0 percent and Illinois' jobless rate was 8.9 percent.
Adams County jobless
rates, last 12 months
7.6% in July 2012
7.9% in June 2012
7.3% in May 2012
7.0% in April 2012
8.0% in March 2012
8.3% in February 2012
8.5% in January 2012
8.5 % in December 2011
8.3% in November 2011
8.1% in October 2011
7.8% in September 2011
8.0% in August 2011
8.1% in July 2011