Del. jobless rate inches up

The unemployment rate in Delaware ticked up by 0.1 percent in December, to 8.5 percent.

That means there were 35,900 unemployed Delawareans in December. The good news is that the jobless rate is 0.3 percent lower than December 2009, when there were 37,600 people in the state out of work.

Meanwhile, the national unemployment rate decreased in December to 9.4 percent, down from 9.8 percent in November. In December 2009, the U.S. unemployment rate was 9.9 percent.

New Castle County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 8 percent, followed by Kent County (8.2 percent) and Sussex County (8.8 percent).

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Over the past 12 months, the job gains in Delaware were in leisure and hospitality (2,900 jobs) and education and health (2,100). The biggest losses were in professional and business services (2,900) and manufacturing (1,100).

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