BRANCH COUNTY, MI (WTVB) - 2012 ended with the jobless rate going up in Branch County as well as in all of Michigan’s 83 counties. The December unemployment rate for the county was 8.1%, an increase of more than one percent from the November figure of 6.8%. However, last year finished up in better shape than how 2011 ended when the county’s jobless rate was 8.7%. Still, 113 more people had jobs a year ago as the labor force in December of 2011 was also a big larger than it is now.
State officials say December labor market activity throughout the state last month was fairly normal as unemployment rates typically increase going into the winter months. And a few more numbers to crunch,compared to Branch County’s jobless rate of 8.1% last month, Steuben County, Indiana was a full one percent worse at 9.1%. Hillsdale was at 9.4%, Calhoun 7.1, and St. Joseph 7.6%.