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Favorable employment trends continue.

Indiana's total payroll employment and its unemployment rate continued to reflect improvement in both January and February, continuing the trends of rising employment and declining unemployment that began in the third quarter 1992.

However, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped less than a percentage point, to 6.0 percent in February, while total employment increased by more than 40,000 workers.

This seeming disparate behavior may reflect uncertainty among Indiana business managers as to whether the strong surge in demand will last. The experience of false starts in the first half of each of the last two years has prompted management caution. So executives are meeting the spurt in demand with longer work-week hours and retention of only experienced workers, rather than hiring less experienced workers and new labor-force entries.

But the persistent increase in consumer demand has punched holes in business restraint practices, the work weeks are stretched to their limits and new hires have become necessary, as evidenced by the new highs in the state's total employment. That promises to push down unemployment rates across the state more rapidly before long; perhaps even close to 5.0 percent before the end of 1993.

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Title Annotation:Indiana's employment scene
Publication:Indiana Business Magazine
Date:May 1, 1993
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