County unemployment remains low in November


SCIOTO — Attempts to rebound the Scioto County economy continue during the coronavirus pandemic, which saw the unemployment reach as high as 15% in April.

The latest figures from the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services shows progress from the earlier stages of the pandemic, returning unemployment numbers to what was seen prior to the shutdown.

With a slight uptick from October, November’s 5.8% rate was the second-lowest of the year and the same as November 2019. According to the Scioto County Commissioners, overall employment is at its highest since 2011.

“Scioto County’s economy is remaining strong and resilient during a very difficult time.,” reads the Commissioners’ Facebook post from Jan. 3. “Much work remains to be done but pro-small business policies, a strong push toward economic development, and strong 2020 county revenues will propel us into 2021 and beyond.”

Still, the county ranks in the top quarter of the state behind neighboring Jackson and Lawrence counties and was a tad over the Ohio average of 5.2%. Noble County in eastern Ohio leads the way with a 7.2% rate, while Holmes County in the northeastern part of the state has the lowest with 2.4%.

Both the state’s and the county’s rates were under the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported national rate of 6.7% for November.

It has been reported nationally that unemployment rates have fallen due to shrinking numbers of those in the labor force. According to figures from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Ohio’s labor force reached some of its smallest amounts three times in 2020 compared to the past five years.

Locally, however the labor force actually increased by nearly 600 workers between July and October this year.

The civilian labor force has mostly trended down this millennium, after reaching its high point of 33,360 in June 2002. October 2020’s 29,683 people in the labor force was the highest its been since April 2017.

Reach Patrick Keck (740)-353-3501 ext. 1931, by email at pkeck@aimmediamidwest.com, or on Twitter @pkeckreporter.© 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.