You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 3:09 p.m.

Washtenaw County's unemployment rate falls to lowest in state

By Nathan Bomey

Washtenaw County's unemployment rate fell to 5.2 percent in November, the lowest rate among Michigan's 83 counties, according to statistics released today by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget.

The number of Washtenaw County residents with jobs rose by 1,300 from October to November, while the labor force rose by 300 people, leading to a drop in the unemployment rate from 5.7 percent in October.

The unemployment rate — which was 6.9 percent a year ago — dropped from October to November mostly because of seasonal holiday retail jobs and public sector positions, including temporary student jobs and support staff.

The Ann Arbor area's professional and business services sector, which had added about 2,000 jobs from July to October, lost 1,500 jobs from October to November.

Retailers added 400 jobs, and the public sector — which, in Washtenaw County, includes jobs at the University of Michigan Health System — added 700 jobs.

The number of jobs based in Washtenaw County fell by 500 from October to November.

Contact's Nathan Bomey at (734) 623-2587 or You can also follow him on Twitter or subscribe to's newsletters.



Wed, Jan 4, 2012 : 2:20 p.m.

Must be the socialism of A2 holding back the counties job growth, right XMO!


Wed, Jan 4, 2012 : 9:38 a.m.

Unemployment numbers are comprised of those that are in the job market for the past 30 days. It does not include those that have not been in the job market in the last 30 days: people who have given up looking; those that have gone off unemployment because it has run out. One solution to unemployment is High Speed Universities check it out


Wed, Jan 4, 2012 : 6:03 a.m.

These statistics are meaningless. They first rely partially on the numbers for people receiving unemployment which is not indicative of actual people unemployed (e.g. your unemployment expired). Further, they tell us very little about the types of jobs people have obtained. For instance, I knew a guy who lost his job at Pfizer in Ann Arbor. He made over $100, 000 a year. To get by, he had to take a job making ten dollars an hour.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Jan 4, 2012 : 12:36 a.m.

That is easy to believe since we also have the state's brain trust.


Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 11:51 p.m.

Is this the Hope and Change everybody was expecting? "mostly because of seasonal holiday retail jobs and public sector positions, including temporary student jobs and support staff." I look forward to cast my vote for Change in November!

David Cahill

Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 11:12 p.m.

It's great that Washtenaw County is back in its historically normal position - the lowest unemployment rate in the state!


Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 9:58 p.m.

Gosh, now what are they going to do now that the holidays are gone. This is not a good time to take measurement of employment. Many company fills their employee list the last couple of months of the year, but when the rush is over, and all the orders are filled, See Ya! OH! thanks for all the fish.


Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 9:08 p.m.

I agree. Haters gonna hate. Go blue!


Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 8:24 p.m.

The University continues to be the bedrock of this county. For all those out there who continually disparage the school should take note that they owe more to this university than they'd like to believe, especially if you own a home in Washtenaw County.


Mon, Jan 9, 2012 : 5:20 a.m.

Nobody says that the U isn't important to the area, just that they do NOT do enough to fulfill their obligations to the community


Tue, Jan 3, 2012 : 8:39 p.m.

Good place to can get hired in. Again, it's not what you know, it's who you know. Been there, done that.