Don’t gasp, but Indiana is leading the nation in employment growth, according to the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette.
The rising number of job seekers, however, resulted in the state’s April unemployment rate inching back up to double digits – 10%.
But that statistic isn’t significant, officials say, when you consider that March’s jobless figure of 9.9% is just an increase of 0.1 percentage point.
“We’re definitely not satisfied, though,” said Marc Lotter, communications director for the Department of Workforce Development.
“Obviously, we want to see the unemployment number go down, but we are tied with Washington, D.C., for job creation and we’re pleased; … although we’re not where we want to be yet. We still have work to do.”
Indiana has added nearly 42,000 positions since the year began.
Teresa Voors, commissioner of the department, said Friday the gains basically recoup jobs lost over the past year.
Still, she said Indiana accounts for just 2% of America’s population but has “7% of the job growth.”
In April, the state added 22,700 jobs, the biggest month-to-month improvement in more than a decade.
On Friday, Gov. Mitch Daniels said he too realizes Indiana has much ground to make up in terms of jobs, but “we just have to hope that these gains will repeat month after month and perhaps strengthen.”