Ohio unemployment rate drops again, below US rate

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Ohio's unemployment rate inched downward again in October, the state Department of Job and Family Services said Friday.

Seasonally adjusted joblessness in Ohio was 6.9 percent in October, down from the revised figure of 7.1 percent in September. That's the lowest rate since August 2008, when it was 6.8 percent.

Ohio's unemployment rate has remained below the national rate, which ticked up to 7.9 percent in October from 7.8 percent in September.

Department spokesman Benjamin Johnson said the state's economic outlook is about the same as it has been for the past year.

"The economy is improving, the job market is strengthening, but it's still happening slowly," Johnson said. "And I don't think anyone would tell you they're satisfied with 6.9 percent unemployment."

The number of unemployed Ohio workers dropped by 10,000 to 396,000 last month. Meanwhile, the state's non-farm payrolls increased by 13,900.

Ohio gained about 7,300 jobs in professional and business services and more than 5,000 in government. Manufacturing lost 2,200 jobs, and those in trade, transportation and utilities dropped by 3,800.

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