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Jobless rates rise in all US metro areas in April

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

WASHINGTON -- Jobless rates rose in all the largest U.S. metropolitan areas for the fourth straight month in April, according to government data released Wednesday.

The Labor Department reported all 372 metropolitan areas tracked saw their jobless rates increase in April from a year earlier. Indiana's Elkhart-Goshen's rate jumped to 17.8 percent, up 12.7 percentage points from a year ago. The Indiana region, which posted the largest increase from last year, has been pounded by layoffs in the recreational vehicle industry.

The second-highest jump occurred in Bend, Ore. Its rate rose to 15.6 percent, up 9 percentage points from last year. The region of North Carolina's Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton saw its unemployment rate rise to 14.9 percent, a gain of 8.8 percentage points from last year.

The figures aren't seasonally adjusted, making month-to-month comparisons far more volatile.

El Centro, Calif., continued to claim the highest unemployment rate in the country -- 26.9 percent. The jobless rate there is notoriously high because there are so many unemployed seasonal agriculture workers.

Following close behind were Yuma, Ariz., with a jobless rate of 20.3 percent, Merced, Calif., at 18.3 percent and Yuba City, Calif., at 18.2 percent.

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