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State's unemployment rate declines to 8.7 percent in October

Georgia added more than 36,000 jobs last month to push the number of jobs to its highest level in almost four years.

Staff Report

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 8.7 percent in October, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in September. The jobless rate was 9.7 percent in October a year ago.

“The unemployment rate dropped because we had an increase of 36,000 new jobs, which is the largest September to October job increase ever,” State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a release. “That job growth pushed the number of jobs in October to the highest level in any month since December of 2008.”

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There were 3,971,700 jobs in October, up nine-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,935,700 in September. The growth came in retail trade, up 8,000; education and health care, up 7,000; professional and business services, up 6,000; state and local public schools, up 5,000; leisure and hospitality, up 3,000; technology, up 2,400; construction, up 1,700; financial services, up 900; and manufacturing, up 700.

“While manufacturing gained 700 jobs during the month, it’s more important to note that the industry has gained 10,500 jobs in the last year,” Butler added.

Georgia gained 68,000 jobs, or 1.7 percent, from 3,903,700 in October 2011. Additional growth sectors over the year include: professional and business services, up 25,500; retail trade, up 14,000; education and health care, up 13,000; food services and drinking establishments, up 9,400; and technology, up 3,600.

Georgia’s labor force continued to increase, climbing to 4,793,540 in October, up by 17,438, or four-tenths of a percentage point, from 4,776,102 in September. The state’s workforce totaled 4,734,487 in October 2011.

“Our labor force has grown consistently over the past year, indicating that Georgians are more optimistic about finding a job, and fortunately, we’ve had the job growth necessary to put these people to work,” said Butler.

The number of initial claims rose 11,931 to 51,495 in October; however, the number of claims is down by 4,370, or 7.8 percent, from 55,865 in October 2011. Most of the October increase came in manufacturing, trade, administrative and support services, and construction.

The number of long-term unemployed workers declined for the sixth consecutive month, dropping 2,100 from September to 206,700 in October. The long-term unemployed—those out of work for more than 26 weeks—make up 49.4 percent of those unemployed in Georgia, the lowest percent in slightly more than two years.

Traci November 15, 2012 at 03:37 PM
I hope this means an easier time getting an interview for a well paying job here in midtown that's not restaurant related.
Drewboo November 15, 2012 at 05:20 PM
I am encouraged to see the numbers reflecting what I have felt was happening - slight job growth, with more to come since it seems companies need more workers but are reluctant to hire.

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