Ohio has reached record employment for the third month in a row during a strong economy.
Though Ohio’s unemployment stayed steady at 4.6 percent, nearly 5,200 more Ohioans were employed in November than the month before. Total nonfarm employment reached 5,648,900, beating previous records set in October and September, according to data from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
“So far in 2018, Ohio has added private sector jobs 26.1 percent faster than the national rate,” said Bret Crow, spokesman for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
Among the highest gaining sector was professional and business services, which added 2,800 jobs. Manufacturing also added 1,400 jobs.
Another highlight for Ohio is moderate wage growth, which is increasing nearly 12 percent faster than the national rate, Crow said.
But fewer people are working, said Miami University economics professor Michael Lipsitz. The employment to population ratio has been dropping this year, meaning fewer working age people are looking for jobs.
“Some of the gains we’ve historically seen when the unemployment rate is low, workers bargaining for higher wages, are still not materializing,” Lipsitz said. “In fact, earnings increases are just barely keeping up with inflation.”
If earnings start increasing at a higher rate, that’s when the economy will show that its benefiting workers, he said.
The website for Ohio Means Jobs has more than 100,000 job openings listed and more than half pay more than $50,000 per year.
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