Unemployment rates drop up north

Unemployment rates have dropped substantially in the past year.

Since June of last year, North Country counties saw an average combined decrease in unemployment rates by 1.6 percent.

According to statistics for this June that the state Department of Labor released Tuesday, Clinton County’s unemployment rate dropped the most, 1.9 percent, followed by St. Lawrence and Hamilton with 1.8 percent decreases. Franklin and Jefferson counties decreased by 1.7 percent. Essex County dropped by 1.4 percent and Warren County by 1 percent.

Hamilton County had the lowest unemployment in the state this June, 4.2 percent, followed by Saratoga and Tompkins counties with 4.5 percent. The counties with the highest unemployment are Bronx with 10.8 percent, Kings (Brooklyn) with 8.3 percent and St. Lawrence and Oswego tied at third with 7.8 percent. Hamilton County’s rates tend to be low in the summer and high in the winter due to the seasonal nature of the economy there.

The Department of Labor found that the state’s unemployment rate fell by 1.3 percent from last June to 6.5 percent. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in June fell by 0.1 percent from last June to 6.6 percent, its lowest level since November 2008. Private-sector jobs in New York increased by 137,300 from last year to a total of 7,589,600, an all-time high.

The department’s unemployment rate estimates are based on people who were available for work and made efforts to find employment. It excludes those who did not make “specific efforts” to find work or those who had temporary illnesses. The estimate also relies in part on the results of a survey, which contacts approximately 3,100 households in the state each month.

Area unemployment rates include the Albany-Schenectady-Troy Capital Region with 5.1 percent, Binghamton with 6.5 percent, Buffalo-Niagara Falls with 6.0 percent, Elmira with 6.5 percent, Glens Falls with 5.2 percent, Ithaca with 4.5 percent, Kingston with 6.1 percent, Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown with 5.6 percent, Rochester with 5.8 percent, Syracuse with 6.2 percent and Utica-Rome with 6.2 percent.