City's jobless rate declines

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Beloit saw its unemployment rate drop nearly 2 percent in September, according to the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.

Beloit’s unemployment rate was 9.9 percent in September, down from 11.8 percent in August. The city’s jobless rate was 12.2 percent in September of 2011.

Still, Beloit’s unemployment rate is the second highest among the 32 cities tracked by the Department of Workforce Development. Racine had the highest rate at 10.7 percent in September, down from 12.1 percent in August.

The September rate is the lowest the city has seen this year. The rate was 12.2 percent in January and the previous lowest rate for Beloit this year was 11 percent in April.

Nearby Janesville had the sixth highest unemployment rate among the cities tracked at 8.7 percent in September, down from 9.2 percent in August. Janesville’s jobless rate in September 2011 was 9.6 percent.

Caledonia had the lowest unemployment rate among the 32 cities tracked at 3.2 percent in September, down from 3.8 percent in August. Madison’s jobless rate was 4.5 percent in September, down from 5.2 percent in August.

All 32 communities tracked by the state saw unemployment rate declines from August to September, and 31 of the communities saw rate declines compared to a year ago. Stephens Point was the only community that did not see a decline, but that community’s rate stayed the same at 7.2 percent when compared to a year ago.

Rock County had an unemployment rate of 7.9 percent in September, down from 8.7 percent in August. The county’s jobless rate was 8.9 percent in September of 2011.

Nearby Walworth County had an unemployment rate of 6.2 percent in September, down from 7.3 percent in August. Walworth County’s jobless rate was 6.9 percent in September of 2011.

Menominee County had the highest unemployment rate among Wisconsin’s 72 counties at 13.7 percent in September, down dramatically from 21.9 percent in August.

Pierce County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 4,3 percent in September, down from 5.1 percent in August. Dane County’s unemployment rate was 4.4 percent in September, down from 5.1 percent in August.

All 72 counties saw unemployment rates decline from August to September and all but two saw declines when compared to a year ago. Iowa County’s rate increased from 4.8 percent in September 2011 to 4.9 percent in September 2012 and Iron County’s rate increased from 8.4 percent in September 2011 to 8.9 percent in September 2012.

The statewide unemployment rate was 7.3 percent in September, down from 7.5 percent in August, but not very different from a year ago when the jobless rate was 7.4 percent.

The national jobless rate was 7.8 percent in September, down from 8.1 percent in August and down from 9 percent in September 2011.

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