NW Ga., Bartow unemployment rate rises
by Staff Report
Nov 29, 2013 | 972 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the unemployment rate in the Northwest Georgia region increased to 7.9 percent in October, up three-tenths of a percentage point from 7.6 percent in September. The rate was 8.9 percent in October a year ago.

Bartow County reported a 5.6 percent increase in initial unemployment claims in October, up 18 over September’s 324 claims. The 342 claims in October were a 35.5 percent decrease from the 530 in October 2012.

Because of the federal government shutdown, no states were allowed to publish local labor market data for September. During the interim, the rate for Northwest Georgia fell from 8.3 percent in August to 7.6 percent for September.

The rate rose in October primarily for two reasons — an increase in new layoffs and an increase in the number of unemployed residents.

The number of new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, increased to 3,336, up by 85, or 2.6 percent, from 3,251 in September. Claims were filed in several sectors, led by administrative and support services and wholesale and retail trade. There were 5,602 claims in October 2012.

The number of unemployed people in Northwest Georgia increased to 32,043, up by 900 from 31,143 in September. There were 36,813 unemployed in October 2012.

The labor force, which is the number of people employed plus those unemployed but actively looking for work, declined by 3,564 to 405,312 in October, down from 408,876 in September. The labor force was down by 10,540 from 415,852 in October 2012.

Metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate increased to 7.7 percent in October, up three-tenths of a percentage point from 7.4 percent in September. The rate was 8.5 percent in October a year ago.

The number of new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, increased to 19,420, up by 2,703, or 16.2 percent, from 16,717 in September. Claims were filed in several sectors, led by administrative and support services, 901; professional and technical services, 644; and trade, transportation and warehousing, 312. There were 22,477 claims in October 2012.

The number of unemployed people in Atlanta increased to 210,017, up by 7,741 from 202,276 in September. There were 233,501 unemployed in October 2012.

While the jobless rate was up, metro Atlanta employers continued to add jobs in October. There were 2,434,400 jobs, up by 15,300, or 0.6 percent, from 2,419,100 in September. Most of the new jobs were added in trade and transportation, 4.300; education and health care, 2,700; government, 1,800; manufacturing, 1,700; professional and business services, 1,300; leisure and hospitality, 1,200; and financial services, 1,100.

Over the year, jobs were up by 63,300, or 2.7 percent, from 2,371,100 in October 2012. The big job gainers were in professional and business services, 16,500; trade and transportation, 13,400; education and health care, 10,700; leisure and hospitality, 9,900; and construction, 8,500.

The labor force, which is the number of people employed plus those unemployed but actively looking for work, declined by 15,541 to 2,721,161 in October from 2,736,702 in September. The labor force was down by 34,497 from 2,755,658 in October 2012.

Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 5.8 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 10.9 percent.

Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for October was 8.1 percent, down from 8.3 percent in September. The rate was 8.8 percent in October a year ago.

Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at www.dol.state.ga.us.