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Jobless Report Raises Questions

A photo of an unemployment office.
The unemployment rate moved up in January.

Ohio’s jobless rate has ticked up slightly, after six months of unchanged numbers. But there are some concerns about other figures in the latest state unemployment report.

The unemployment rate has been at 4.6 percent since June, and moved up a tenth of a point in January – which is higher than it was a year ago and a lot higher than the national jobless rate of 4 percent. But economists are raising serious questions about a huge downward revision in data from December on private sector jobs created.

The conservative Buckeye Institute said that revision cuts the total number of jobs created last year in half, and said that change needs further explanation. And economic research analyst George Zeller said it’s the largest monthly loss that Ohio has seen in decades, including during the Great Recession, and said earlier reports of job growth numbers are now highly questionable.