Area Unemployment Shows Year-Over-Year Decline

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Despite a slight uptick in rates in December, unemployment in Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties finished last year about two percentage points lower than 2013, data released this morning show.

Both Columbiana and Mahoning counties posted an average unemployment rate during 2014 of 6.2%, down from 2013’s 8.1% in Columbiana County and 8.3% in Mahoning County. In Trumbull County, the 6.3% jobless rate last year was down from 8.3% the year before.

Rates in all three counties last month were up slightly from the month before, although down from a year earlier. In December, Columbiana and Trumbull counties both posted unemployment rates of 5.1% while Mahoning’s was 5.2%. Those were up slightly from November’s 4.8% in Columbiana County and the 4.9% rates posted by both Mahoning and Trumbull counties that month.

In December 2013, the unemployment rate was 7% in Columbiana County, 7.6% in Mahoning County and 7.5% in Trumbull County.

The Mahoning Valley’s two largest cities — Warren and Youngstown — both saw unemployment rates decline by more than two percentage points year-over-year. Youngstown’s annual average unemployment rate declined from 10.3% in 2013 to 7.7% last year. Warren ended 2014 with an average unemployment rate of 6.9%, down from 9% the year before.

In December, Youngstown’s unemployment rate was 6.3%, slightly up from 6.2% the month before although down from 9.1% in December 2013. Warren reported an unemployment rate of 5.2% in December, compared with 5.1% the month before and 8.3% in December 2013.

The Youngstown-Warren-Boardman metropolitan statistical area, which encompasses Mahoning and Trumbull counties in Ohio and Mercer County, Pa., reported an annual unemployment rate for 2014 of 6.2%, and a similar rate for the Ohio-only portion of the MSA. In 2013, the average unemployment rate for the year was 8.2% and slightly higher for the two Ohio counties, 8.3%.

In December, the MSA posted an unemployment rate of 5.1%, up slightly from 5.0% in November but down from 7.3% in December 2013. In the Ohio-only portion of the MSA, the unemployment rate was slightly higher, 5.2%, up from 4.9% the month before and down from 7.5% in December 2013.

Copyright 2015 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.

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