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March 8, 2014

County jobless rate dips again

GREENVILLE — The local unemployment rate dipped again in January, even though Hunt County lost more than 260 jobs to start the year.

On the positive side, the rate is the lowest reported for the month in six years, more people were listed as employed locally during than any other January and more than 800 jobs have been created in Hunt County during the past year.

But the decrease in the overall unemployment rate was due in large part to a significant reduction in the county’s civilian labor force between December and January, according to a report released Friday by the Texas Workforce Commission.

Hunt County was listed with a 5.5 percent unemployment rate in January, down from 5.6 percent unemployment in December and also below the 7.2 percent unemployment rate recorded during January 2013.

The rate was the lowest for the month since January 2008, which saw 5.1 percent unemployment locally.

There were 37,679 people reported employed in the county in January, the highest number of people reported as on the job locally during January so far this century.

The January figure represented a decrease of 264 jobs since December, although Hunt County has added 805 jobs since January 2013.

A total of 2,202 people were reported to have filed for unemployment in Hunt County in January, a decrease of 58 people since December and 649 fewer than in January 2013. The numbers were the lowest reported locally for the month of January since 2008.

But the county’s overall civilian labor force was reported to have been reduced by 322 people between December and January, as students and others left seasonal jobs.

Hunt County is listed by the Texas Workforce Commission as part of the Dallas-Plano-Irving Metropolitan Division, which also includes Dallas, Collin, Delta, Denton, Ellis, Kaufman and Rockwall counties.

Dallas and Delta counties tied for the division’s highest unemployment rate in January, at 6.2 percent, while Kaufman County posted a 6 percent unemployment rate and Ellis County recorded 5.6 percent unemployment in January.

Collin County listed a 5.2 percent unemployment rate two months ago, Denton County posted 5.1 percent unemployment and Rockwall County recorded the division’s lowest January unemployment rate at 4.8 percent.

Among other nearby counties, Fannin County posted a 7.4 percent unemployment rate during January, Hopkins County 5 percent, Lamar County 7 percent, Rains County 5.6 percent and Van Zandt County listed a 5.5 percent unemployment rate during January.

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