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Published: Tuesday, 5/20/2014 - Updated: 2 years ago

Shrinking labor force lowers area unemployment numbers


Unemployment rates in Toledo and Lucas County have fallen to their lowest April levels in more than a decade, though that is largely explained by a shrinking labor force.

State officials said today the county‘s estimated unemployment rate for April was 5.7 percent, down from 6.6 percent in March and 8.2 percent in April, 2013. Toledo’s estimated unemployment rate was 6.2 percent last month, down from 7.1 percent in March and 8.8 percent in April, 2014. 

The last time unemployment rates were this low in April was 2001. 

Compared to last April, the county added about 1,400 jobs, while the labor force shrunk by 300 people. Over the last year, Lucas County‘s labor force shrunk by 3,600 while employment grew by 1,600.

The state said unemployment rates fell across the region last month. In Fulton County, April‘s unemployment rate was 5.7 percent, down from 7.3 percent in March and 8.2 percent in April, 2013. In Ottawa County, the April unemployment rate was 7.4 percent, down from 10.1 percent in March and 9.4 percent in April, 2013. In Wood County, the April unemployment rate was 4.9 percent, down from 5.8 percent in March and 6.8 percent in April, 2013.

Unemployment rates have been consistently falling this year across Ohio. The state’s unemployment rate in April was a seasonally adjusted 5.7 percent. The state‘s estimates for county unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted. 

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