VAN WERT — The employment situation in Van Wert County has improved slightly over the past 12 months. The latest unemployment report from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services shows the jobless rate in the county has held steady since October at 6.7 percent.
The size of the labor force in November is listed at 14,000 and the number of unemployed at 900 — both the same as October, but there are 100 fewer listed as employed in the latest report.

Comparing the November 2013 report with the November 2012 numbers, the figures are just a little better. The new report shows 100 fewer unemployed, 100 more working and 100 additional in the work force than 12 months ago. The Van Wert County unemployment rate in November 2012 was 7.0 percent.

Elsewhere around the area, rates for November 2013 remained steady or increased slightly in the new report. Both Mercer and Paulding counties saw one-tenth of a percent increase in unemployment with Paulding at 6.5 percent and Mercer at a state-low 4.4 percent. Remaining unchanged are rates in Allen (7.7 percent), Auglaize (5.1 percent), and Putnam (5.9 percent) counties.

There are still nine Ohio counties with unemployment above 10.0 percent, led by Monroe County’s 15.6 percent rate. Next comes Meigs (12.3), Pike (12.1), Scioto (11.2), Ottawa (11.1), Morgan (10.7), Adams (10.4), and both Huron and Vinton (10.1) counties.

Allen County is the only county in the region to be in the top half of unemployment rates of Ohio’s 88 counties. Van Wert County is rated as 60th-worst, Paulding County 65th-worst, Putnam County 82nd-worst, Auglaize County 86th-worst, and Mercer County 88th-worst.

In Indiana, both Adams and Allen counties saw increases in the jobless rate in November. In Allen County, the rate stepped from 6.7 percent in October to 6.9 percent with an additional 433 listed as unemployed and 1,610 more employed. In Adams County the unemployment rate rose from October’s 6.0 percent to 6.3 percent in November with nearly 100 fewer employed and 44 more unemployed.

Both Adams and Allen counties have seen their jobless rates drop over the past 12 months. Adams County’s rate has fallen from 7.6 percent to last month’s 6.3 percent. Allen County’s rate was 7.8 percent in November 2012 and has dropped to 6.9 percent over the course of a year.
Ohio’s unemployment rate last month slipped from 7.5 percent in October to 7.4 percent. Indiana saw a two-tenths drop from 7.5 to 7.3 percent in November.

The U.S. national jobless rate fell from October’s 7.3 percent to 7.0 percent in November.