Georgia's unemployment rate dips to 8.7% in August
9/20/2013, 6 a.m.
Georgia’s unemployment rate dipped to 8.7 percent in August after three consecutive months of increases.
In DeKalb County, initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits also declined in August.
The Georgia Department of Labor said Thursday that Georgia’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate was down one-tenth of a percentage point in August from 8.8 percent in July. The rate was three-tenths of a percentage point lower than 9 percent in August a year ago.
State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler credits the rate decrease to a significant reduction in layoffs, the fewest since September 2007.
“Also, we had a small increase in the number of jobs,” he said.
There were 35,503 new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance. In July, there were 54,106. Much of the decline came in manufacturing, as workers who were temporarily laid off in July returned to work in August. Fewer claims also came in construction, trade, and administrative and support services.
Also, the number of initial claims was down by 10,222, or 22.4 percent, from 45,725 in August 2012. Reductions were mostly in manufacturing, construction, trade, and administrative and support services.
In DeKalb, there were 2,589 new claims for UI benefits, a decrease of 605 or 18.9 percent, from 3,194 in July. In August 2012, there were 3,747 initial claims.
Metro Atlanta posted job gains of 57,100 for 2,415,900 jobs in August, an increase of 2.4 percent from 2,358,800 in August 2012.
Statewide, there were 4,045,100 jobs in August, up by 3,000 from 4,042,100 in July. Government added 10,700 jobs as education workers returned to the public schools after the summer vacation. However, the gain was offset somewhat by the loss of 7,700 private-sector jobs, mostly in professional and business services.
Butler said the job gains that the state normally would have in August, especially in the private sector, occurred in June and July, two months in which it normally loses thousands of jobs.
“As far as the overall number of jobs, we are much better off this August than last,” he said.
For more information, visit www.dol.state.ga.us.