The Georgia Department of Labor announced that the unemployment rate in the Northwest Georgia region increased to 8.5 percent in July, up eight-tenths of a percentage point from 7.7 percent in June. The rate was 9.0 percent in July a year ago.
The July rate increase is primarily due to seasonal factors, such as temporary layoffs in educational services and manufacturing. However most of the laid-off workers have returned to their jobs.
Also, there were 5,489 new claims for unemployment insurance filed in July, an increase of 2,530, or 85.
5 percent, from 2,959 in June. Most of the increase was due to temporary layoffs in textile manufacturing. There were 6,286 claims filed in July 2013, down 12.7 percent.
Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 6.6 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 11.4 percent.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate for July was 7.8 percent, up from 7.4 percent in June. The rate was 8.3 percent in July a year ago.
Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at www.gdol.ga.gov.