An In-depth Look at Unemployment in Ohio

The last blog post focused on the unemployment rate across the United States.  This blog looks into why Ohio’s unemployment rate is below the national average.  The map below is a time series map that shows the unemployment rate from January 2011 to September 2012.



The time series map above reveals a constant drop in the unemployment rate from 9% in January 2011.  Currently, Ohio’s unemployment rate is 7% of as September 2012.  The three counties registering the lowest unemployment rates are Mercer, Holmes, and Delaware Counties.  The three counties registering the highest unemployment rates are Pike, Meigs, and Jefferson Counties.  Not one county is reporting unemployment greater than 13% of as September 2012 compared to 18 in January 2011.  Unemployment tends to be higher in Southeastern Ohio compared to the rest of the state.



The next three charts shows trends in employment in Ohio.  The first chart shows the total number of people employed throughout the state of Ohio.  In January 2011, only 5,299,000 people were employed.  By September 2012, that number had risen to 5,353,000, a change of 54,000. May 2012 had the highest total employed at 5,386,000.  Employment is continuing at a slow, upward trend.


The second chart shows the total labor force in the state of Ohio.  Total labor force is the sum of employment and unemployment.  The total labor force is in a declining trend.  The total labor force went from 5,825,000 in January 2011 down to 5,759,000 in September 2012. This is a change of 66,000 leaving the labor force.  A number of factors include an aging baby boomer population, people leaving the state, and people leaving the labor force because there are no job opportunities.


The final chart shows the number of unemployed in the state of Ohio.  The chart below shows the number unemployed declining from 526,000 in January 2011, to 406,000 in September 2012.  This is a change of 120,000.  This mirrors a decline in the unemployment rate in the state of Ohio.