The New York State Labor Department's new unemployment report shows a few miles makes a big difference in the job trends.

The Binghamton labor market's unemployment rate last month was 8.8 percent, up from 8.3 percent a year earlier.

The situation is much different in the nearby Ithaca labor market, which posted a 5.6 percent jobless rate in December, the same rate as twelve months earlier.

The jobs picture in the Elmira market posted a more pronounced decline over the past year than what happened in Binghamton. The Elmira unemployment rate last month rose to 9.3 percent, compared to 8.0 percent a year earlier.

The Tompkins County 5.6 percent unemployment rate last month was the lowest in New York state.

Overall, the state's private sector job count increased by 123,200 over the past year, according to the labor department report.