Area unemployment statistics took a positive turn in September, with unemployment rates dropping in both the county and the city of Clinton.
Clinton county unemployment stood at 6.9 percent a month ago, but has now dropped to 6.3 percent. Within the city limits, September showed an improved unemployment rate of 7.1 percent, down significantly from 7.7 percent in August. Of the 21 cities with unemployment rates monitored by Iowa Workforce Development, only four (Ames, Mason City, Iowa City and Fort Dodge) showed stronger improvement from August to September.
This makes the Gateway area consistent with statewide trends, as the unemployment rate in Iowa dipped to 6 percent from 6.1 percent in August. A year ago in September, the unemployment rate statewide was 6.2 percent, and the number of unemployed Iowans has decreased by over 3,000 in the timeframe.
These numbers show positive trends, but, according to IWD director Teresa Wahlert, there is still work to be done.
“Iowa has consistently been on better economic footing than most states with an unemployment rate holding in the low 6 percent,” said Wahlert, in a statement. “However, we recognize that 100,000 Iowans are still unemployed and the department continually works to connect unemployed workers with current opportunities throughout the state.”
Though unemployment rates have decreased, the number of working Iowans has fallen to a year-low of 1,560,900, down about 7,000 from a year ago. This decrease in the number of employed citizens is a trend nationwide, something IWD attributes to uncertainty regarding government policy and global economic trends.