Unemployment Rate Inches Up In Northwest Georgia

Unemployment Rate Unchanged In Dalton

Thursday, November 23, 2017

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said on Thursday that Northwest Georgia saw the number of unemployed residents climb and its unemployment rte tick up in October.

The October unemployment rate, at 4.3 percent, was up from 4.1 percent in September. The unemployment rate rose as the number of unemployed residents increased by 391 to 17,800. The October rate compares favorably to last October when the rate was 5.5 percent.

“Ideally, we’d rather not see the rate go up in any single month,” Mr. Butler said. “But it’s not alarming because the trend over the past year continues to look good. The numbers fluctuate from month to month.”

The total number of employed residents decreased by 2,932 to 400,046. However, there are 12,421 more employed residents in the area than in October 2016.

At the same time, Northwest Georgia’s labor force, which includes the total number of residents with jobs and those unemployed but looking for work, declined to 417,846, down by 2,541 in October. The labor force is up by 7,749 since October 2016.

Unemployment claims were up by 0.6 percent to 1,946. Claims were up in manufacturing.  When compared to last October, claims were down by 22.5 percent from 2,511.

Commissioner Butler said that the number of metro Dalton’s employed residents fell in October but not enough to make the area’s jobless rate increase.

The unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.9 percent from September to October.   The October rate still compares favorably to last year when the rate was 6.3 percent.

“We see seasonal and even monthly variations in these numbers,” Mr. Butler said. “So, it’s not uncommon to see them rise or fall month to month. It’s more important to look at the trends over time. And, Dalton’s numbers over the past 12 months remain strong.”

The number of employed residents declined by 947 to 59,812. However, from October a year ago, the number of employed residents is up by 1,230 from 58,582.

At the same time, metro Dalton’s labor force, which includes the total number of residents with jobs and those unemployed but looking for work, declined to 62,890, down by 1,018 in October. The labor force is up by 379 since October 2016.

Mr. Butler said Wednesday that in October jobs declined by 500 to 70,300. The job loss came in manufacturing. However, since October 2016, metro Dalton has added 600 jobs, a 0.9 percent growth rate. The job growth has come in trade, transportation and warehousing, professional and business services, and the goods-producing industry.      

Unemployment claims were up by 16.8 percent to 752. Temporary claims were up in manufacturing. When compared to last October, claims were down by 22.1 percent from 965.

Employ Georgia, the GDOL’s online job listing service at employgeorgia.com showed 2,666 new active job postings in Northwest Georgia for October.

The Georgia Department of Labor tracks labor force data for the state, 37 cities with populations of 25,000 or more, all 159 counties, 14 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and 11 Regional Commission (RC) areas.

Visit dol.georgia.gov to learn more about career opportunities, Employ Georgia and other GDOL services for job seekers and employers and to connect on social media.

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