Ohio employers cut jobs in May as unemployment rate rises

Ohio's unemployment rate rose to 5% in May even as companies say they're begging for workers.

Companies throughout Ohio are begging for workers as the economy fully reopens and the pandemic recedes.

Yet, state employment data released Monday for May paints a far different picture, one of an economy struggling to get back to where it was before the coronavirus struck.

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services said Ohio’s unemployment rate climbed to 5% from 4.7% in April. Employers cut 14,800 jobs and the number of unemployed rose by 5,000 workers to 278,000.

The labor force, made up of the people with a job or looking for work, shrank by 218,300 workers in May to 5.55 million workers. That number topped 6 million in 2007 before the financial crisis struck.

Ohio needs about 300,000 more jobs to get back to where it was before the pandemic.