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RACINE COUNTY —The City of Racine’s unemployment rate rose by .3 percent in January compared with the previous January, giving the city a clear margin with the worst jobless rate among Wisconsin cities tracked by the Department of Workforce Development.

Racine’s jobless rate stood at 5.0 percent in January, according to preliminary, unadjusted estimates from the state. The city’s rate in January 2018 was 4.7 percent.

Next in line were Beloit at 4.3 percent, Kenosha and Milwaukee tied at 4.2 percent and West Allis at 3.9 percent.

Racine’s jobless rate increase was a sharp increase from its December rate of 3.8 percent, the lowest rate on record for that month since the earliest available state data from January 1990.

With the January increase for the city of Racine came a slight increase in the county’s unemployment rate which edged up from 4.0 percent in January 2018 to 4.1 percent this January.

Jobless rates are based on people who are working or actively seeking work. They do not capture those who have given up trying to find a job. Nor do they show underemployment: people who work part-time but want full-time work.

Other area jobless rates for January, followed by January 2018:

  • Caledonia — 3.4 percent, 3.4 percent.
  • Mount Pleasant — 3.6, 3.5 percent.
  • Kenosha — 4.2, 4.0 percent.
  • Oak Creek — 2.7, 2.8 percent.

Jobless rates are based on what municipality people live in, even if they commute elsewhere for a job. The state also estimates the raw number of jobs in certain geographic areas including Racine County. The county was estimated to have 78,900 jobs in January compared with 78,500 one year earlier, a gain of an estimated 400.

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Michael "Mick" Burke covers business and the Village of Sturtevant. He is the proud father of two daughters and owner of a fantastic, although rug-chewing, German shepherd dog.

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