Even when adjusted for seasonal variations, unemployment rose in the Fort Wayne area and in the state as a whole in December, according to figures released Friday by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.
The unadjusted unemployment figures are 7.9 percent in Allen County, up from 7.4 percent in November. Across the region, the unadjusted numbers range from 7.1 percent in Wells County to 9.5 percent in Noble County. Even with the increases, the majority of northeast Indiana counties had lower unemployment rates than the state as a whole, in which the unadjusted rate was 8.5 percent in December.
In 10 northeast Indiana counties (Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley), the seasonally adjusted rate increased from 8.2 to 8.3 percent, according to the Community Research Institute at IPFW.
John Stafford, director of the Community Research Institute, said that in northeast Indiana, more people left the labor force and fewer people were employed. Together, the effect was a higher unemployment rate in the region.
“Across the northeast Indiana region, we experienced a decline in the labor force, a decrease of 851 residents no longer either employed or actively seeking employment; a 2,534 decrease in the number of individuals (employed); and an increase in the number of residents unemployed (1,674),” Stafford wrote in an analysis of the numbers.