The jobless rates in Ohio and Michigan fell again in November, with Ohio's dropping half a percentage point to 8.5 percent and coming in just below the national unemployment figure of 8.6 percent
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, which released the data Friday morning, said the number of employed Ohioans rose by 6,000 in November after falling by 600 in October.
November's gains were attributed to the addition of 3,500 jobs in trade, transportation, and utilities; 1,500 jobs in government; and 1,100 financial activities. Manufacturing also was strong, with 4,400 jobs added. The Department of Job and Family Services said that figure offset losses in construction that amounted to about 4,000 jobs.
Overall, the number of Ohioans classified as unemployed was down 30,000 people to 496,000.
Michigan's November unemployment rate dropped even more significantly, down to 9.8 percent from 10.6 percent in October. Michigan's Department of Technology, Management, and Budget said the state added 21,000 jobs in November. The state said the number of people classified as unemployed fell by 39,000 to 457,000.
The unemployment rate in both states has fallen more than a percentage point over the last 12 months. In Ohio, the unemployment rate in November 2010 was 9.6 percent. In Michigan, the unemployment rate in November 2010 was 11.4 percent.
In spite of the recent gains for Michigan, the state has still shed 12,000 jobs over the last 12 months.
Ohio officials said non-farm employment grew by 75,600 jobs over the past 12 months.