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MI jobless rate drops for third consecutive month

By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network

LANSING, MI –

Michigan's unemployment rate has dropped a third consecutive month and now stands at 9.8%. That's the lowest the rate has been in more than three years. But, as we hear from Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta, there's good and bad news in the numbers.

The jobless rate fell by eight-tenths of a percentage point in November. That's a sharp drop and much of it was due to new hiring. But retail was the only sector to show significant growth from month to month and much of the decline is also due to about 19,000 fewer people in the workforce competing for available jobs. All told, there are still about 457,000 people in Michigan without jobs and looking for work.

At 9.8%, the state's unemployment rate is still above the national rate. When people who have quit looking are counted, along with part-time workers who'd like to be full-time, Michigan's rate of unemployment and under-employment is 18.8%.

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