Carroll County's jobless rate fell slightly in August, but still is a full percentage point higher than a year ago.
The county's unemployment rate fell from 3.6 percent in July to 3.3 percent in August, state development officials announced.
That followed a statewide trend that saw Maryland's jobless rate fall slightly to 4.4 percent from 4.5 percent in July.
But the county also followed Maryland in having more unemployed people this past August than a year ago. In August 1989, only 2.3 percent of the county's work force -- 3.7 percent statewide -- was without a job.
Compared with August 1989, unemployment was higher in every county in Maryland this year.
The main reason for the decline was the withdrawal from the job market of nearly 30,600 students and other summer workers statewide, said the state Department of Economic and Employment Development.
Theodora Stephen, manager of the DEED office in Carroll, said August was a stable month in the county.
"August was a good month. I'm happy the rate went down," she said.
It's hard to predict what the jobless rate for September will be, however, she said.
The national unemployment rate increased in August to 5.6 percent from 5.5 percent the month before and 5.1 percent in 1989. And Friday, the Labor Department reported the U.S. civilian unemployment rose again in September, to 5.7 percent, the highest level in 2 years.
In the Baltimore area, the jobless rate dropped to 4.8 percent in August from 4.9 percent, although unemployment in the city itself failed to budge from July's 7.4 percent.
In the metropolitan region, Harford County enjoyed the greatest drop in unemployment, to 4.4 percent from 5.3 percent in July.
Statewide, total unemployment fell by 3,400 in August, according to the Department of Economic and Employment Development.
"Increased hiring in the food-processing industries and recall activity in apparels and rubber products bolstered performance in the manufacturing sector," the department said in a statement.