Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Declines To 8.2 Percent In April

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 8.2 percent in April. The rate was down two-tenths of a percentage point from 8.4 percent in March and nine-tenths of a percentage point from 9.1 percent in April a year ago.

“At 8.2 percent, Georgia’s unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been since December 2008,” said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “While a two-tenths of a percent drop in one month is good to see, the most important part of that is that we saw Georgia employers create over 31,000 jobs.”

The addition of 31,200 new jobs in April pushed the overall number to 4,026,900, up by eight-tenths of a percentage point from 3,995,700 in March. Most of the job gains came in leisure and hospitality, 10,700; professional and business services, 9,400; trade and transportation, 7,500; education and health services, 2,600; and construction, 1,800.

“We're seeing a lot of positives in construction,” Commissioner Butler said. “When we look at over-the-year growth in construction jobs, we’re seeing our best numbers since 2007, which predates the recession.”

Mr. Butler said Georgia added 900 construction jobs between April 2012 and April 2013. Georgia’s over-the-year growth added 69,400 jobs, or 1.8 percent, since 3,957,500 were recorded in April 2012. Other sectors showing strong growth were: professional and business services, 31,000; leisure and hospitality, 16,100; education and health services, 14,000; and trade and transportation, 12,700. Government jobs were down by 10,500.

The number of layoffs, represented by new claims for unemployment insurance benefits, rose by 5,661, or 15.3 percent, to 42,644 in April from 36,983 in March. The increases came mostly in manufacturing, trade and transportation, along with administrative and support services. However, the number of initial claims was down over-the-year by 4,848, or 10.2 percent, from 47,492 in April 2012. Most of the over-the-year declines came in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, and education and health services.

“In seven of the last ten years, the number of new claims has increased from March to April, due primarily to seasonal factors,” said Mr. Butler.  “But, if you compare the number of new layoffs this year to April of last year, it’s obvious that Georgia’s job market is more stable.”

The number of long-term unemployed workers declined for the 12th consecutive month. It fell 4,000 to 177,100 in April, its lowest level since December 2009 The long-term unemployed—those out of work for more than 26 weeks—make up 44.8 percent of those unemployed in Georgia.

And, the state’s labor force, those working or actively seeking employment, declined to 4,813,410, down by 8,058 from 4,821,468 in March. It was 4,797,401 in April 2012.

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


Atlanta Tech CEO Joins FourBridges Team

FourBridges Capital Advisors Thursday announced that Doug Johns, the current chairman and former CEO of HDJ Wireless Enterprise LLC, an Internet of Things company that operates the Atlanta-based global technology firm NIVIS, has joined the FourBridges team as senior advisor.  Mr. Johns will expand the investment banking firm’s industry focus to include technology and telecommunication ... (click for more)

FirstBank Gains Regulatory Approval For Acquisition Of Northwest Georgia Bank

FirstBank, the wholly owned subsidiary of First South Bancorp, Inc., and third largest Tennessee-headquartered bank, announced Thursday it has received all necessary regulatory approvals to complete its acquisition of Northwest Georgia Bank in Ringgold. These approvals came from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions and the ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center May Get Bankruptcy Trustee Who Would Focus On Sale Of Fort Oglethorpe Hospital

Hutcheson Medical Center may be headed for appointment of a bankruptcy trustee, who would focus on the sale of the financially-strapped Fort Oglethorpe hospital. An attorney told a bankruptcy court judge in Rome, Ga., on Wednesday afternoon that a buyer is discussing paying over $20 million for all the assets of the community hospital. Attorney Rob Williamson ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center Unsecured Creditors Committee Asks Trustee Be Appointed For Fort Oglethorpe Hospital; Asks Bankruptcy Not Be Dismissed

The Unsecured Creditors Committee of Hutcheson Medical Center is opposing a motion by U.S. Trustee Guy Gebhardt for a bankruptcy judge to dismiss the bankruptcy for the financially-ailing Fort Oglethorpe hospital.   Instead, the group is asking Judge Paul Bonapfel to appoint a trustee to oversee the Hutcheson finances. In a 16-page motion, the committee said if the bankruptcy ... (click for more)

Who's Responsible For East Ridge's Stadium? - And Response (2)

There just can be no excuse for East Ridge High School's stadium being in such dangerous condition that it has been condemned.   Where is responsible for this? I know there are a few other stadiums like this as well. And there is no excuse for this.  Building new and beautiful schools, state of the art technology. Top athletic facilities as well. Yet, East Ridge ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Five Straight Days Of Football

If I covered my first high school football game as a fledging sports when I was 16 years old, and I am now 66, I figure that’s darn near about a half-century of passes and punts. The mystifying part is that I still get as big of a kick hovering around the game as I did on my very first time so as we usher in the start of the college season with five straight days of games, here ... (click for more)