Unemployment rate up slightly in Spokane County

Spokane County’s unemployment rate ticked up slightly in November, to 7.7 percent. That matches the national jobless rate and is just under the statewide rate of 7.8 percent.

The county rate also remains about two percentage points lower than in the first quarter of the year. It hit a high this year of 9.9 percent in February.

Unemployment varies widely across Eastern Washington, with a high last month of 11.1 percent in Ferry County and a low of 5.2 percent in Whitman County.

Initial claims for unemployment insurance shot up to nearly 4,200 in Spokane County in November – about 1,400 more initial claims than in October.

About 5,650 people had continuing unemployment claims in the county last month, and 379 individuals had exhausted their unemployment insurance.

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