By DANIEL SUDDEATH
> SOUTHERN INDIANA —
The jobless rate for the Louisville Metro Statistical Area dropped to less than 8 percent in September, as the region continues to climb back to pre-recession employment totals.
From August to September, the unemployment mark fell from 8.2 to 7.6 percent for the Louisville Metro Statistical Area which includes Floyd and Clark counties.
The area’s unemployment rate was 9 percent in September of 2011.
A U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics survey released this week showed the number of unemployed dropped by about 4,000 over the month for the area.
From August to September, payroll growth was nearly flat though the area has added more than 15,000 jobs since August of 2011.
The increase for the area equates to a growth rate of about 3 percent for the year period, which is better than the average for Indiana, Kentucky and the nation.
“For Louisville Metro, the three sectors that contributed the most to year-over-year growth were professional and business services, manufacturing and leisure and hospitality,” said Uric Dufrene, Sanders Chair of the Indiana University Southeast School of Business.
While the year-to-year changes were some of the highest since the 1990s for the Louisville Metro Statistical Area, Dufrene said the exceeded growth rate isn’t likely to continue.
One of the problems is weakened domestic and global consumer demand, he continued.
“At some point, this continued weak demand will show up locally in slower job growth,” Dufrene said. “So unless we see a significant pick up nationally, the numbers for Louisville Metro will not significantly improve.”
In fact, the area could see a slow down in overall job growth, Dufrene added. The most recent job total was at more than 620,000, which is still down from the 627,000 pre-recession peak.
Indiana’s jobless rate was recorded at 8.2 percent for September, and the national average was 7.8 percent for the month. Both rates had dropped from September of 2011.
Clark County’s jobless rate was recorded at 6.7 percent for September, and Floyd County’s rate was 6.4 percent.