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 Thu, Mar 22, 2012 : 5:58 p.m.

Washtenaw County's unemployment rate rose slightly in January

By Nathan Bomey

Washtenaw County's unemployment rate edged upward from 5.4 percent in December to 5.6 percent in January, according to statistics released today by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget.

The area lost 5,300 jobs from December to January, including 2,800 in the state and local government sector, which was mostly attributable to seasonal cuts to support staff at educational institutions, according to the state.

Retailers also cut 900 positions, reflecting "a normal decline as retail businesses shed temporary workers following the holiday shopping season," state analysts said in their report.

Michigan's unemployment rate fell to 9 percent in January, marking its lowest point in nearly three and a half years.

The Ann Arbor area added 2,600 jobs from January 2011 to January 2012. The unemployment rate fell from 6.8 percent.

Washtenaw's unemployment rate in January was the lowest among Michigan's 83 counties. The next lowest was Clinton County at 6.6 percent. Oakland County's rate was 9 percent and Wayne County's was 11.8 percent.

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