Special to the Journal
ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that the unemployment rate in the Southwest Georgia region decreased to 8.8 percent in August, down seven-tenths of a percentage point from 9.5 percent in July. The rate was 9.4 percent in August a year ago.
The rate dropped because there was a significant reduction in layoffs. There were 1,405 new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance, which are 603, or 30 percent, fewer than the 2,008 in July. Much of the decline came in manufacturing, with additional reductions in construction, wholesale trade, administrative and support services, and professional and technical services.
Over-the-year, the number of initial claims was down by 282, or 16.7 percent, from 1,687 in August 2012. Reductions were mostly in manufacturing, administrative and support services, and accommodations and food services.
The labor force, which is the number of people employed plus those unemployed but actively looking for work, declined by 2,457 to 161,339 in August, down from 163,796 in July. And, it was also down by 2,963 from 164,302 in August 2012.
Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 6.1 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 11.9 percent.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for August was 8.7 percent, down from 8.8 percent in July. The rate was 9.0 percent in August a year ago.
Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at www.dol.state.ga.us
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