Vt. jobless rate up, but said sign of optimism

MONTPELIER, Vt. -- The Vermont Department of Labor says the state's unemployment rate ticked up one-tenth of a percent last month to 5.4 percent, the fourth straight monthly increase.

But Labor Commissioner Annie Noonan says that as the economy improves, people become more optimistic and start looking for work, which can cause an increase in the state's unemployment rate.

The national unemployment rate in September was 7.8 percent.

The September rate follows a rate of 5.3 percent in August and 5.5 percent in September 2011.

September unemployment in Vermont's 17 labor market areas ranged from 3.5 percent in Hartford to 6.7 percent in Newport.

Noonan says her department is seeing an increase in job postings and with a significant development project getting under way in the Northeast Kingdom more jobs are expected.