Employment

Unemployment claims in Santa Cruz County shot up by nearly 200 in August, according to state data.

A monthly employment report issued last Thursday by the Arizona Department of Economic Opportunity showed that 2,216 people filed for jobless benefits last month, an increase over the 2,007 who filed in July.

At the same time, the number of people employed in the local economy also rose, though by not as much. The report showed 16,397 people employed in Santa Cruz County in August, an increase of 123 from July.

The net loss of jobs caused the local unemployment rate to increase to 11.9 percent in August from 11 percent in July. That was the second-highest rate among Arizona’s 15 counties, trailing only Yuma at 22 percent.

August marked the third consecutive month that local joblessness rose after reaching a yearly low of 6.2 percent in May. The 2,216 people filing jobless claims last month was nearly double the 1,165 filed in May.

Statewide, Arizona’s unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.6 percent in August. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate was also unchanged in August at 3.9 percent.

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