Indiana adds jobs in January, but unemployment rate stays flat

Published: .
Updated: .

Indiana's unemployment outlook is still something of a mixed bag.

As Governor Mike Pence got ready to announce 1,000 new jobs for the state Monday with a Fortune 500 company, the latest jobs report was out with some encouraging numbers and a note of caution.

The state added 8,200 private sector jobs in January. While that marks the 19th consecutive month of job growth, technically the state's unemployment rate went up in January due to the large number of people returning to the labor force to look for work.

According to the numbers, Indiana accounted for nearly six percent of the nation's private sector employment increase while adding jobs at three times the national rate (0.3 percent versus 0.1 percent). Indiana continues to stay ahead of the game by outpacing the national average for private sector growth (7.9 percent vs. 4.9 percent).

However, while the state had significant job growth in January, the unemployment rate rose by .3 percent to 8.6 percent because the labor force increased by about 14,000 people, more than 10,000 of whom returned to look for work. That's the largest one-month expansion of our labor force since November 1993.

"It's quite encouraging Indiana seems to be continuing the trend of private sector job growth into 2013," said Scott B. Sanders, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. "However, it is very confusing when BLS has survey data from 5,000 businesses showing continued increases in employment, while the household survey continues to show employment below what businesses are reporting."

Who's hiring?

Sectors showing significant gains in January include:

Professional and Business Services: 5,700

Leisure and Hospitality: 2,200

All Other: 1,600

Trade, Transportation & Utilities: 800

The Financial Activities (-1,000), and Construction (-900) sectors showed significant decline. Total non-farm employment increased in January (5,800).

Midwest unemployment rates