Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Rises To 8.6 Percent In December

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 8.6 percent in December, up one-tenth of a percentage point from 8.5 percent in November. The rate was 9.4 percent in December a year ago.

“The unemployment rate ticked up slightly because of a combination of factors,” said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “We had a modest increase in new layoffs, along with a small job loss driven primarily by seasonal layoffs in education. Basically, the December numbers are flat, but even so, this is the best November to December job market report since 2007.

“The most important thing to remember from this report is that our unemployment rate is much lower, the pace of new layoffs slower, and the number of jobs significantly larger than a year ago,” Mr. Butler continued. “Our economy has definitely improved in the past year.”

While the number of jobs decreased by 400 to 3,985,800 in December, it rose by 70,200, or 1.8 percent, from 3,915,600 in December 2011. Most of the over-the-year job growth came in professional and business services, 26,000; trade, transportation, and warehousing, 17,300; education and health care, 12,700; leisure and hospitality, 12,100; and manufacturing 11,800.

“In December, there were 362,800 manufacturing jobs in Georgia, which is the most since April 2009,” said Governor Nathan Deal. “More than 15,000 of those jobs have been created since December 2010. After years of decline, the growth we’ve had over the past two years indicates that Georgia’s manufacturing base is alive and beginning to thrive again. This is a great step closer to making Georgia the No. 1 place in the country to do business.”

The number of initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits increased to 50,861, up by 3,510, or 7.4 percent, from 47,351 in November. Most of the increase came in manufacturing, construction, wholesale trade, and administrative and support services. However, the number of initial claims was down by 12,853, or 20.2 percent, over the year, dropping from 63,714 in December 2011. Most of the over-the-year decline came in accommodations and food services, manufacturing, administrative and support services, construction, and retail trade.

Georgia’s labor force grew by 4,159, reaching 4,804,459 in December, its highest level since February 2009. The labor force has grown by 64,384, or 1.4 percent, from 4,740,075 in December 2011.

The number of long-term unemployed workers declined by 7,600 to 195,000 in December, its lowest level in 34 months. The long-term unemployed—those out of work for more than 26 weeks—make up 47.1 percent of those unemployed in Georgia.

Connect on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter @GeorgiaDOL. You can access all pages via the website at www.dol.state.ga.us.



Chattanooga Chamber Calendar Of Events For Oct. 23-27

TUES/24 East Brainerd Council Meeting 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. Car Barn:  6721 Heritage Business Court Speaker: Steven Wagner, Erlanger Children's Hospital $12.   TUES/24 Grand Re-Opening of Food City 5 - 5:30 p.m. Food City:  7804 E. Brainerd Rd .   THUR/26 Reality Check - East Ridge High School ... (click for more)

Catherine Heigel Named Chief Operating Officer For Elliott Davis

Catherine Heigel, the former director of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, has returned to Elliott Davis, LLC as its chief operating officer.  In this role, Ms. Heigel manages the firm’s operational support functions, including legal, information technology, human resource, marketing and communications, and firm administration. In addition, ... (click for more)

TDOT Recommends Spot Improvements For Road Up To Signal Mountain Rather Than Costly Widening Or Reworking The W Road

Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) officials said Friday that widening the road up to Signal Mountain or reworking the W Road would both be very costly. Officials said spot improvements on the existing road should solve most of the issues and be much less expensive.   TDOT officials made a presentation on the status of Signal Mountain Road to the town council ... (click for more)

Shaw Industries To Invest $42 Million At Decatur, Tn., Plant

Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe and Shaw Industries Group, Inc. officials announced Friday that the floor products manufacturer will invest $42 million to upgrade its yarn facility in Decatur. Shaw plans create 75 new jobs in Meigs County as part of the investment. “I’d like to thank Shaw for its continued ... (click for more)

October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Myth And Fact Check

My husband and I recently had the privilege of participating in the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in Chattanooga. I listened as my husband told the audience about how his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when he was nine and how she died from the disease when he was fourteen. As a child, my husband didn’t understand what breast cancer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: At Last! New Schools

In this me-me-me-only-me world of today, we-we-we-finally got a thrilling $125 million facility plan for the Hamilton County Department of Education on Thursday night. The School Board unanimously approved a well-thought-out “first Band-Aid” that will provide a new elementary school in Harrison, middle schools in East Hamilton and Howard, and a quite-satisfactory answer to move ... (click for more)