New York City's unemployment rate inched up even as the rate fell in the rest of the state in July, the New York Labor Department reported last week.

The city rate hit 9.6% last month, its highest level since June 1997, surpassing the national rate of 9.4%. Nationally, the unemployment rate fell by one-tenth of a percentage point in July from the previous month. Statewide unemployment fell to 8.6% last month from 8.7% in June.

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