Ohio unemployment at 25-year high

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's unemployment rate has hit a 25-year high of 9.4 percent as job losses have continued in both manufacturing and services.

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services says the February jobless rate it released Friday was up from January's rate of 8.8 percent.

Department spokesman Brian Harter says the state's job market continues to weaken. He says the last time unemployment was higher in Ohio was in May 1984, when the jobless rate was 9.6 percent.

State unemployment hit an all-time high of 13.8 percent in December 1982 and January 1983.

The number of workers unemployed in Ohio in February was 566,000, up from 526,000 in January. The number rose from 349,000 in February 2008, when the unemployment rate was 5.9 percent.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

From a State of Ohio news release:

Ohio and U.S. Employment Situation (Seasonally Adjusted)

Ohio's unemployment rate was 9.4 percent in February, up from 8.8 percent in January, according to data released this morning by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. Ohio's nonfarm wage and salary employment decreased 7,600 over the month, from 5,208,000 in January, to 5,200,400 in February.

"Ohio's labor market continued to weaken in February," ODJFS Director Douglas Lumpkin said. "Job losses occurred in both the service-producing and goods-producing industries as the unemployment rate increased to 9.4 percent."

The number of workers unemployed in Ohio in February was 566,000, up from 526,000 in January. The number of unemployed has increased by 217,000 in the past 12 months from 349,000. The February unemployment rate for Ohio was up from 5.9 percent in February 2008.

The U.S. unemployment rate for February was 8.1 percent, up from 7.6 percent in January.

Total Nonagricultural Wage and Salary Employment (Seasonally Adjusted)

Ohio's nonfarm wage and salary employment dropped 7,600 over the month, from 5,208,000 in January to 5,200,400 in February, according to the latest business establishment survey conducted by ODJFS.

Service-providing industries declined 4,100 over the month to 4,339,500. Losses in administrative, support, and waste services (-4,300) helped lower professional and business services 5,700. Educational and health services dropped 2,300, while trade, transportation and utilities fell 1,000. Also down were financial activities (-800) and information (-400). Employment was up in government (+2,900), leisure and hospitality (+2,100), and other services (+1,100). Goods-producing industries, at 860,900, lost 3,500 jobs. Manufacturing was down 3,600 due to losses in durable goods (-3,100) and nondurable goods (-500). Construction was up 100 and mining and logging was unchanged.

Over the past 12 months, nonagricultural wage and salary employment fell 222,100. Goods-producing industries dropped 129,500. Declines in durable goods (-72,100) and nondurable goods ( 27,300) lowered manufacturing 99,400. Construction also had notable losses (-29,800). Mining and logging slipped 300. Service-providing industries were down 92,600. The largest declines occurred in professional and business services (-45,000) and trade, transportation, and utilities (-37,800). Also down were financial activities (-11,700), government (-8,000), information (-4,300), and other services (-2,900). Growth in health care and social assistance boosted educational and health services 12,600. Leisure and hospitality advanced 4,500.

EDITOR'S NOTE: All data cited are produced in cooperation with the U. S. Department of Labor. Data sources include Current Population Survey (U.S. data); Current Employment Statistics Program (nonagricultural wage and salary employment data); and Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program (Ohio unemployment rates). More complete listings of the data appear in the monthly Ohio Labor Market Review. Unemployment rates for all Ohio counties as well as cities with populations of 50,000 or more are presented in the monthly ODJFS Civilian Labor Force Estimates publication. Updated statewide historical data may be obtained by contacting the Bureau of Labor Market Information at (614) 466-1109.