The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that metro Dalton's unemployment rate increased to 9.5 percent in December, up one-tenth of a percentage point from 9.4 percent in November. The rate was 11 percent in December a year ago.
According to a news release, the rate rose because the number of new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, increased to 4,283 up by 3,101, or 262.4 percent, from 1,182 in November. Claims increased in several sectors, including manufacturing, administrative and support services, health care and social assistance, trade, transportation, and warehousing, and construction. There were 1,771 claims in December 2012.
The number of jobs in Metro Dalton declined in December to 63,100, a loss of 600 jobs mostly in the service industries. The number of jobs in Metro Dalton also declined over-the-year. There were 300 jobs, or 0.5 percent, fewer than in December 2012, when there were 63,400 jobs. Most of the annual losses came in textile manufacturing.
Meanwhile, Georgia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for December was 7.4 percent, down from 7.6 percent in November. The rate was 8.7 percent in December a year ago.