10 percent Unemployment Rate in Georgia last month

By Kristi E. Swartz

 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Georgia’s unemployment rate for September was 10.1 percent, the same as the month before, the state’s Department of Labor said early Thursday. It’s the 23rd consecutive month that Georgia’s unemployment rate has been higher than the national rate of 9.8 percent, the labor department said. Jobs continue to go away, State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond said.

The number of payroll jobs in September dropped 237,100 or 5.8 percent from the previous September, figures show. “Georgia’s September unemployment rate is unchanged from the previous month, however underlying trends confirm continuing job market deterioration,” Thurmond said. The rate is seasonally adjusted. The DOL first reported a 10.2 percent unemployment rate for August but has since revised that figure slightly. The number of people in the state’s work force dropped to 4.73 million in September, a 2.4 percent decrease from 4.85 million in September a year ago, the DOL said.

The number of jobless workers receiving state unemployment benefits jumped 58.8 percent to 139,000 in September 2009, from 88,121 in September 2008, the agency said. Another 150,000 received extended unemployment benefits from the federal goverment, the labor department said. Dalton suffered the highest percentage of job losses for September: 8.4 percent.

That was followed by Rome, at 6.2 percent and metro Atlanta where the percentage of jobs dropped 5.9 percent, according to the DOL. The majority of the jobs lost were in manufacturing, trade, construction and administrative-support areas, including temporary employment.

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