State unemployment rates had big increase in January
Reflecting the post-holiday doldrums, January unemployment rates jumped markedly in all 12 Wisconsin metro areas, according to the state's Department of Workforce Development.
Overall, the state unemployment rate in January was 8 percent, significantly higher than the 6.6 percent rate posted in December and above the 7.7 percent posted in January 2012, the department reported Wednesday.
In Rock County, the overall unemployment rate increased from 7.9 percent in December to 9.5 percent in January. In January 2012, the local rate was 9.4 percent.
In a news release, the department said unemployment rates typically hit their highest levels during winter months, particularly when they are not seasonally adjusted.
The trend extended beyond the largest metro areas in the state, the department reported. All 72 counties reported increases, as did the 32 cities with at least 25,000 people.
Among counties, Rock reported the 24th highest rate, while Dane County had the lowest at 5.5 percent. Walworth County had a January unemployment rate of 9 percent, while Green and Jefferson counties had rates of 7.4 percent and 8.4 percent, respectively.
Among individual cities, Janesville's rate of 9.9 percent was the 10th highest in the state. At 12.5 percent, Beloit was the second highest behind Racine's rate of 13.3 percent.