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MICHIGAN UNEMPLOYMENT RATE HOLDS AT 7.9 PERCENT IN DECEMBER; RATE DOWN FOR THE YEAR

 DETROIT, Jan. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Michigan's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in December remained unchanged from its November level of 7.9 percent, F. Robert Edwards, director of the Michigan Employment Security Commission, reported today.
 According to labor force estimates prepared for Michigan by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobless workers in the state last month edged down by 1,000 to 363,000. In November, 364,000 or 7.9 percent of the work force were unemployed. A year ago, December 1991, the jobless rate was 9.2 percent with 421,000 out of work.
 "The state's overall employment picture changed little during December," Edwards said. "We did see some job gains in the auto industry because of worker callbacks. There was also increased hiring in the retail trade for the holidays, but these gains were offset by employment losses in construction and in state and local government."
 The two government sectors reported lower December employment levels as schools went into recess for the Christmas holiday period.
 Statewide employment totaled 4,240,000, a drop of 27,000 from November. The civilian work force fell by 29,000 to 4,602,000 as workers who were unsuccessful in finding holiday employment left the job market.
 Among the nation's 11 most populous states, Michigan had a lower December jobless rate than California at 9.7 percent, Massachusetts at 8.6 percent, New York at 8.4 percent and New Jersey at 8.0 percent. North Carolina had the lowest rate among the 11 states at 5.5 percent. The Great Lakes states of Ohio and Illinois had rates of 7.2 and 7.1 percent, respectively.
 For the final quarter of 1992, Michigan's jobless rate averaged 8.1 percent, down a point from the third quarter's 9.1 percent. In 1991, unemployment averaged 9.3 percent for the October to December period.
 The state's unadjusted jobless rate in December fell slightly to 7.2 percent from 7.3 percent in November. The number of unemployed declined by 9,000 to 331,000.
 JOBLESS RATE FALLS TO 8.8 PERCENT IN 1992
 For the entire year, Michigan's unemployment rate dropped to an average of 8.8 percent from 9.2 percent in 1991. The jobless total averaged 405,000 in 1992, down 13,000 over the year. The number of workers with jobs climbed by 80,000 to an average of 4,205,000, while the work force grew by 67,000 to a record high 4,610,000.
 UNEMPLOYMENT INCREASES NATIONALLY
 The jobless rate for the nation's civilian labor force also remained unchanged from November to December at a seasonally adjusted 7.3 percent. For the year, unemployment rose to an average of 7.4 percent from 6.7 percent in 1991.
 -0- 1/8/93
 /CONTACT: Norman Isotalo of MESC, 313-876-5488/


CO: Michigan Employment Security Commission ST: Michigan IN: SU:

ML -- DE013 -- 3022 01/08/93 12:01 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 8, 1993
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