Pontiac, Michigan -- Oakland County's unemployment rate fell to 7.5% in April. This is the first time since October of 2008 that the county's rate dipped below 8% and the lowest it’s been since September of that year when it reached 7.1%. County Executive L. Brooks Patterson credited the county’s Emerging Sectors initiative for the latest jobs news.
"The private sector created about 48,000 jobs in Oakland County the past two years, with the lion’s share of that growth in the high-salary category," Patterson said. "We will add at least another 41,000 jobs in the next three years, according to George Fulton and Don Grimes. It's clear our foray into the knowledge-based economy almost a decade ago was both prescient and vital to our future."
In an effort to diversify the economy, Patterson launched Oakland County's Emerging Sectors initiative to identify the top 10 sectors that will attract and retain sustainable, high-paying jobs to the region in the 21st century. Companies in these emerging sectors are involved in such leading-edge fields such as advanced electronics & controls, advanced materials & chemicals, communications & information technology, robotics & automation, and Oakland County's Medical Main Street.
From its inception in 2004 through last month, 234 Emerging Sectors companies have invested $2.25 billion in Oakland County creating 29,100 jobs and retaining 13,234. For more information on Emerging Sectors and job growth opportunities in Oakland County, go to AdvantageOakland.com.
The county's unemployment rate in March was 8.3%. The April unemployment figures indicate there are 535,512 individuals employed in Oakland County out of a total work force of 578,794.
For media inquiries only, please contact Bill Mullan, media and communications officer, at 248-858-1048.