Georgia’s August 2012 Unemployment Rate Unchanged At 9.2%

The State of Georgia’s August 2012 unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.2%. This is the second straight month at 9.2% and also matches January for the highest rate for Georgia in 2012. For the month, there were an estimated 439,700 individuals unemployed in the state. This is up by about 1,500 over July 2012. There were also around 2,400 fewer workers employed in Georgia, and just under 1,000 less in the total workforce in August. These (comparatively) small variations when compared with July led to the flat unemployment rate in August.

Though the trend for Georgia has been higher unemployment rates in recent months, the present rate is 0.7% better than the 9.9% rate in August 2011. In comparison with 2011, there are over 30,000 fewer unemployed individuals in Georgia. Also for the past year there are roughly 64,200 more individuals employed in the state. There’s also been an increase in the total Georgia workforce in the past 12 months of over 34,000. These sizable changes have resulted in the major drop in Georgia’s unemployment rate over the past year. Compared to the national average, however, Georgia’s August rate remains much higher (1.1%) than the U.S. average of just 8.1%.

The State of Georgia continues to have one of the highest unemployment rates in the region. The States of Tennessee (8.5%), Florida (8.8%), Alabama (8.5%), and Mississippi (9.1%) all have lower rates in August. Only the State of South Carolina with an August unemployment rate of 9.6% is higher than Georgia. However, just like Georgia, many of the states in the area have also been experiencing higher unemployment rates in recent months.

Georgia’s business types had mixed results in August. Some major business sectors that had positive August results include Manufacturing, Information, Education & Health Services, and Leisure & Hospitality. Down in August were Construction, Financial Activities, Professional & Business Services, and Government. The industry with the biggest improvement (by percentage) over the past year was Professional & Business Services (+ 4.8%). The largest decline (again by percentage) for the prior year was Construction (- 6.7%). The business sector with the most employed in August was in Trade, Transportation & Utilities with around 842,800 employed. Second in August was Government with approximately 665,000 employed.

Later this month the September employment numbers for Georgia will be publicized. We’ll once again take a look at state’s industries and how it compares to the past and to it’s neighbors. Please understand that formerly announced employment numbers could be changed at a later date.

State of Georgia Unemployment Trends for April 2012

The unemployment rate for the State of Georgia for April of 2012 has been reported at 8.9%.  This rate is an improvement from the 9.0% unemployment rate in the previous month of March 2012.  The result is approx. 3,000 less unemployed workers in GA for April.  When we look the civilian labor force numbers for the month we see that this numbers also decreased for the month by almost 5,000 workers.  When these numbers decrease along with unemployment rate it can mean that some people have left the workforce all together (or the state).

Specific industries in Georgia that saw employment gains for April 2012 include Financial Activities, Professional and Business Services, Construction, and Trade Transportation and Utilities.  Georgia industries seeing employment decreases for the month include Leisure and Hospitality, Manufacturing, and Government.

When we compare to one year ago the rate is much better than the April 2011 unemployment rate of 9.8%.  The 8.9% rate is the lowest seen in the state since all the way back to February of 2009.  Approximately 75,000 more workers are employed in Georgia than 1 year ago,

When we look at the numbers for major cities in Georgia we see that certain areas continue to see better than others.  Columbus’ unemployment rate was 8.4%, Savannah’s rate was also 8.4%, Atlanta’s rate was 8.5%, and Gainsville was at just 6.9%.  Areas of GA that had poorer rates than average rates are Brunswick at 9.7%, Albany at 9.5%, and Dalton at 11.4%.  However most areas of the state did see an improvement for the month of April and even more improvement from the start of the year.

Compared to other states around the region Georgia’s rate of 8.9% for April 2012 is the highest.  The unemployment rates in the neighboring states of Alabama (7.2%), South Carolina (8.8%), Florida (8.7%), and Tennessee (7.7%) are all better than Georgia.

When looking at the nation as a whole, Georgia’s 8.9% unemployment rate is higher than the national unemployment rate of 8.1%.  Once again however, both the State of Georgia and the nation saw general improvements in their unemployment rates for the month and year.

When the GA May 2012 unemployment numbers have been released we’ll revisit the rates, trends, and numbers.  As always, please be aware that these numbers can and do get adjusted and may change from the numbers listed in this article.

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