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New job seekers outpacing new jobs blamed for a slight rise in Michigan's unemployment rate in July

Michigan’s unemployment rate ticked up one tenth of one percent in July to 8.8%.  

It’s the second consecutive month the state’s jobless number went up.   The increase is blamed on the number of new job seekers entering the market outpacing the number of job openings.

Bruce Weaver is an economic analyst for the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget.  He says the rising unemployment number should not be a concern.

“With more people entering the workforce seeking jobs, that’s largely prevented the unemployment rate from falling as much as it would have occurred based on the rate of job growth we’ve had,” says Weaver.

Weaver says jobs in Michigan are up by 70,000 over the last year, particularly in things like manufacturing, business services and leisure & hospitality.

Michigan’s highest unemployment rate in 2013 was 8.9% back in January.

The jobless rate bottomed out at 8.4% in April and May.

In July, 2012, Michigan’s unemployment rate was 9.3%

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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