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Elkhart County Unemployment Rate Drops, But Workforce Numbers Continue Downward Trend

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Elkhart County’s unemployment rate dropped slightly in December, even as the number of people with a job continued to drop as well, according to the Elkhart Truth.

The county’s unemployment rate was 3.1 percent for the month of December, a two-tenth percentage point decrease from the rate of 3.3 percent in November, according to statistics released by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. The county’s December unemployment rate was the seventh lowest rate out of Indiana’s 92 counties.

The county had a total of 3,213 unemployed individuals at the end of November, a decrease from 3,420 in November. Elkhart County is in sole possesion of the lowest unemployment rate in Region 2, which encompasses Elkhart, St. Joseph, Marshall, Kosciusko and Fulton counties. Kosciusko is second with an unemployment rate of 3.3 percent, Marshall comes in third at 3.4 percent, St. Joseph is fourth at 4.2 percent and Fulton rounds out the group with a rate of 4.3 percent.

The labor force in the county dropped to 102,881 in December, down from 103,780 in November. The number of employed individuals in the county also dropped, from 100,360 in November to 99,668. The decline in the labor force and employed individuals potentially means that individuals with seasonal jobs are taking the winter off, have moved away from the county entirely, or have started working outside the county, the Elkhart Truth reported.

The city of Elkhart’s unemployment rate declined one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.8 percent in December, while Goshen’s unemployment also declined to 3.2 percent. Goshen’s labor force in December sat at 15,761, a decrease from 15,895 in November. Elkhart’s labor force also decreased, from 24,171 in November to 23,970 in December.

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