Jobs were harder to come by in the Buffalo Niagara region in May as the state Department of Labor reported an unemployment rate of 8.5 percent.
That figure was up nearly a full point from 7.6 percent a year ago and represents the highest jobless rate since at least 1990. It also was the third time in the past four years that unemployment for the month of May has topped 8 percent (8.3 percent, '09; 8.2 percent, '10).
The labor department showed increases in all metropolitan areas across the state. Rochester had a jobless rate of 8.0 percent compared to 7.3 percent last year. The statewide average was 8.6 percent, up from 7.8 percent in May 2011.