Broad Minn. jobless rate is improvingby Martin Moylan, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The broadest measure of unemployment in Minnesota, which includes people who have had to settle for part-time jobs, is improving.
The standard unemployment number excludes people who want full-time work but can only find part-time jobs and people who have given up looking for work altogether. But a measure that does count those workers is improving.
On average from September 2011 to August of this year, 11.9 percent of Minnesotans in the labor force were unemployed or underemployed. That was down from an average of 13.3 percent for the previous 12-month period.
Steve Hine of Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development said the results are in line with other gauges of unemployment.
"Each one of those measures or categories of underutilized if not officially unemployed people has shown improvement over the last year," Hine said.
Minnesota is doing better than the nation on both broad and narrow counts of unemployment. Nationwide, the unemployment rate that counts discouraged and underemployed workers has averaged 15.1 percent.