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Midwest still outperforming the nation.

The Midwest employment picture continues to be brighter than that of the United States as a whole. Indiana's unemployment rate, after seasonal adjustment, fell to 5.5 percent in August, down nearly a percentage point from the July figures.

Every metropolitan area in the state except Bloomington and Elkhart contributed to the August improvement, with the Gary/Hammond registering a dramatic unemployment drop of two percentage points. Rates in Evansville, Fort Wayne, Kokomo, Muncie, Terre Haute and New Albany all showed declines of a least one percentage point. The area with the lowest rate, Lafayette, improved further, with a 2.9 percent jobless rate in August. Kokomo's 6.7 percent rate was the highest among the state's major cities.

Manufacturing industry in Indiana and elsewhere in the Midwest continues to provide support to the faltering recovery. The national figures are somewhat less optimistic, with September data revealing a decrease of 0.1 percent in total U.S. manufacturing employment.

As a result, Federal Reserve authorities have instructed their chairman to move once again to ease the credit reins in the banking system if the economy continues to stumble along the recovery path. And the early September report on the U.S. labor market would suggest such action may be forthcoming.

TABULAR DATA OMITTED
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Indiana's economic performance compares favorably with the rest of the United States
Publication:Indiana Business Magazine
Date:Nov 1, 1991
Words:213
Previous Article:Surprises continue.
Next Article:Enough talk.
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