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Manufacturing job growth helps drive down Ohio jobless rate

Ohio’s unemployment rate edged down to 5.1 percent in October from 5.3 percent in September as employers statewide added 4,300 jobs over the same period, the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services announced Friday.

RELATED: Many Ohioans still struggling despite low unemployment

The number of unemployed workers fell 9,000 to 296,000 during the month, the state said.

“Manufacturing was by far the best gain we had in any industry,” said George Zeller of Cleveland, an economic research analyst. “This is important because those are high-wage jobs.”

The biggest job gains were in manufacturing (4,200) and government (4,400).

Those gains were offset by job losses across a broad swath of sector.The private education and health care sector loss 2,700 jobs; leisure and hospitality lost 1,700 jobs; professional and business services cut 1,300 jobs; there was a loss of 1,200 jobs in finance; and a loss of 1,100 construction jobs.

In the past year, the state has added 59,400 jobs.

RELATED: Jobless rates jump in every Ohio county

Ohio’s job growth continues to lag that of the U.S. From October 2016 to October 2017, Ohio’s job growth rate was 1.08 percent. The U.S. job growth rate was 1.4 percent for the same period.

“Ohio’s job growth has been below the national average for 59 consecutive months, ” Zeller said. “Last month we said that that was broken, but the revision shows that Ohio only gained 100 jobs in September.”

The U.S. jobless rate for October was 4.1 percent, a decrease from 4.2 percent the previous month, with the nation gaining 261,000 jobs, according to the Labor Department.

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