The state Department of Workforce Development says Indiana's unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in September, the first drop in in five months even though the state lost 6,000 private-sector jobs.
The 8.2 percent rate matches the unemployment rate for Indiana in July and is a full percentage point lower than it was in September 2011. The statewide unemployment rate peaked at 10.6 percent in June 2009.
Workforce Development Commissioner Scott Sanders says he's encouraged to see Indiana recorded its first increase in the labor force in seven months. The department said the 2,000 people added to the work force is a sign more Indiana residents may be encouraged by strong job growth and are again looking for work.
Sanders says unemployment insurance claims are at their lowest level since 2000.