Washington County unemployment among lowest in the area
Washington County’s unemployment rate continues to fall. According to the Iowa Workforce Development, Washington County has one of the lowest unemployment rates in southeast Iowa at 3.6 percent.
That is noticeably lower than where the figure was a year ago when it was 4.4 percent, which was only slightly lower than the year before that.
Statewide unemployment dropped to 5.2 percent, compared to 5.9 percent in September 2011. The U.S. unemployment rate is higher than Iowa’s at 7.8 percent, but that, too, is lower than it was a year ago.
Washington County’s unemployment rate is lower than every other county in southeast Iowa with the exception of Johnson County, whose rate is 3.2 percent. However, several nearby counties saw their unemployment rates drop by nearly a whole percentage point as well, and a few fell even more than that.
Keokuk County’s rate fell from 6.1 to 5.1. Iowa County’s went from 5.4 to 4.5. Jefferson County dropped by more than a percentage point, from 7.0 to 5.9. Henry County’s rate fell substantially from 7.1 to 5.6.
“The drop in the September jobless rate was welcome news, but we are still cautious about the job market” said Teresa Wahlert, director of Iowa Workforce Development. “The employment numbers continued to depict a slow and uneven recovery.”