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Jobless rate drops in St. Charles County

St. Charles County’s jobless rate dropped to a seven-year low in October and could drop lower when new figures are released by Missouri officials later this month.

The county’s unemployment rate stood at 4.3 percent in October, the lowest rate in 2014 and the lowest rate since December 2007 when the rate was estimated at 4.2 percent. The statistics are compiled by the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center.

St. Charles County’s jobless rate has ranged from the highest one-month rate so far in 2014 of 6.7 percent in February to previous lows of 5.2 percent in September, August and April. And the county’s rate could drop in November because the overall jobless rate for Missouri was 5.6 percent in November, down from 5.9 percent in October. The nation’s rate was 5.8 percent in November.

More detailed statistics with information on jobless rates for individual Missouri counties in November aren’t expected to be released until Dec. 30.

An estimated 193,195 St. Charles County residents, out of the county’s estimated workforce of 201,883, were employed in October, with 8,748 people listed as jobless that month. The 8,748 figure marks the first time this year that the one month total for jobless in the county has dropped below 10,000 people, according to state estimates. The number of persons listed as jobless in October also is  the lowest since April 2008.

The county’s rate is the lowest among neighboring Missouri counties and the state’s overall jobless rate for October.

In October, the city of St. Louis’ jobless rate was 7.3 percent, St. Louis County’s rate was 5.2 percent, Franklin County was 4.7 percent, Jefferson County was 4.9 percent, and both Lincoln and Warren counties rates were 5.1 percent.

Jobless rates also fell in St. Charles County’s four largest municipalities in October from September. O’Fallon’s rate was estimated at 3.8 percent, down from 4.7 percent the month before.

That city’s workforce, the largest in any St. Charles County municipality, was estimated at 43,597 in October.

The jobless rate for the city of St. Charles dropped to 4.2 percent in October from 5.2 percent in September. St. Peters’ rate was 4.5 percent in October, down from 5.1 percent in September and August. Wentzville’s jobless rate was 3.9 percent in October, down from 4.8 percent in September.

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