The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased for the fifth consecutive month to 4.8 percent in June, down one-tenth of a percentage point from 4.9 percent in May.
The last time the state recorded a jobless rate as low as 4.8 percent was in September 2007. In June 2016, the rate was 5.3 percent.
“Georgia’s unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in almost 10 years, because our employers continue to create jobs and put record numbers of people to work,” said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “We now have record highs for the number of employed individuals, the labor force size and total number of jobs in Georgia.”
Employers added 27,400 jobs in June, a 0.6 percent growth rate, which increased the total number of jobs to 4,496,000. The growth more than doubled the average May-to-June increase of 12,100 jobs for the past three years. Job gains came in leisure and hospitality, 9,200; professional and business services, 8,500; other services, such as repair, maintenance, personal and laundry services, 5,700; education and health services, 5,600; state and local government, 2,100; information services, 1,100; and trade, transportation and warehousing and financial activities, 1,000 each. The job gains were offset somewhat by losses in construction, 4,000, and manufacturing, 3,000.
Over-the-year, Georgia gained 122,600 jobs, a 2.8 percent growth rate, up from 4,373,400 in June 2016. The national job growth rate was 1.6 percent.
The number of employed residents rose by 8,782 to 4.8 million from May to June. There were 153,335 more Georgians employed than in June 2016. The number of jobless residents declined by 5,385 to 240,923 in June. There were 18,394 fewer unemployed residents than in June of last year.
The labor force increased by 3,397 to 5,038,712 in June, partially because high school and college students entered the job market. The labor force consists of employed residents and those who are unemployed but actively looking for jobs. The labor force is up by 134,941 from 4,903,771 in June 2016.
The number of initial claims for unemployment insurance, a measure of new layoffs, increased by 771, or 3.1 percent, to 25,638. The increases came in manufacturing and construction, administrative and support services, accommodations and food services, and educational services, which includes private schools. Over the year, claims were down by 1,657, or 6.1 percent, from 27,295 in June 2016.