Houston County Jobless Rate Released | Business
The jobless rate for Houston County in December 2012 was 7.4 percent.
That's 1.4 percent lower than the state's unemployment rate of 8.8 percent
According to a state news release, unemployment rose to 9.2 percent from November's 8.7 percent rate, but it was down from December 2011 when the rate was 9.5 percent.
Officials claim the rise comes from a combination of factors, including a "slight increase" in new layoffs and a reduction in the area work force.
The uptick reflects a similar statewide trend. However, the jobless rate across Georgia only rose one-tenth of percentage point while metro Macon's rate jumped five-tenths of a percentage point.
The Georgia Department of Labor reports that unemployment claims were down by 27.5 percent from December 2011.
Meanwhile, the number of jobs dropped by 500 from November 2012 to 98,700 jobs. Most of that decline was attributed to service-related industries.
There were 97,000 jobs in December 2011.
The labor force is comprised of people with jobs and people seeking jobs. That number dropped by 217 in December 2012 but was still higher than in December 2011 when the labor force counted 112,944 people.
Metro Athens remains the state leader with the lowest jobless rate at 6.6 percent. The highest rate is 11.4 percent in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region.
Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at www.dol.state.ga.us