Carroll jobless rate rises to 6.1% in July

September 05, 1993|By Katherine Richards | Katherine Richards,Staff Writer

Carroll County's jobless rate rose from 5.8 percent in June to 6.1 percent in July, but the increase was largely seasonal, Maryland Department of Economic and Employment Development officials said Friday.

Continuing seasonal layoffs in education helped push the county's unemployment rate higher, said Patrick Arnold, director labor market analysis for the department.

Short-term vacation shutdowns in manufacturing also contributed to the increase in unemployment, said Marco K. Merrick, a DEED spokesman.

Often, he said, manufacturing workers who do not qualify for vacation sign up for unemployment benefits during vacation closures.

"It can happen in summer, and it can happen a lot of times at Christmas," he said.

The normal July influx of summer job seekers also contributed to Carroll's unemployment increase, Mr. Merrick said. This effect was especially noticeable this year, he said, because fewer federally funded summer jobs were available.

The number of Carroll residents working or seeking work rose to 68,332 in July from 66,717 in June, and the number of people filing for unemployment insurance rose from 3,844 in June to 4,201 in July.

The number of people working in Carroll County increased to 64,131 in July from 62,873 in June.

Statewide, unemployment fell from 6.8 percent in June to 6.6 percent in July.

"That's a favorable sign," Mr. Merrick said, given that July is routinely the month when the work force is largest, which may cause unemployment to be high.

He said Friday's statistics indicate that the state is continuing its slow recovery. Hourly wages are up slightly from June, he said, and first-time unemployment claims and total unemployment benefits paid are down from July 1992.

L "These are usually precursors for hiring," Mr. Merrick said.

However, Carroll County's July unemployment rate is up nearly a full percentage point from the same month a year ago, from 5.2 percent to 6.1 percent.

Mr. Arnold said that is partly because Carroll County had a good month in July 1992, and partly because the county has not fully recovered from layoffs in electronics during the last quarter of 1992.

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