The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the preliminary unemployment rate in the Southern Georgia region declined to 9.7 percent in October, down two-tenths of a percentage point from 9.9 percent in September. The rate was 10.7 percent in October 2011.
The trend was different in Tift County as the rate increased by 0.1 increase in the same period from 9.6 in September to 9.7 percent in October. Even with the slight increase things are better than the same time in 2011 which saw an unemployment rate of 11 percent in Tift County.
Overall in the Southern Georgia Regional Commission area, which includes every county in the Gazette coverage area, other than Worth, the unemployment rate declined because the number of unemployed people dropped by 314, to 16,900 from 17,214 in September.
Alphabetically here are how the other counties in the Gazette coverage compared between September and October — Ben Hill, 12.9 percent in Septmeber, 12.5 percent in October; Berrien, 9.7, 9.5; Cook, 10.5, 10.6; Irwin, 11.4, 12.5; Turner, 8.9, 8.8; and Worth, 8.2, 8.7.
Worth is counted in the Southwest Georgia tally. That area saw a drop from 9.0 to 8.9 percent from September to October.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 8.7 percent in October, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in September. The jobless rate was 9.7 percent in October a year ago.
Statewide, there were 3,971,700 jobs in October, up 36,000, or nine-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,935,700 in September. Over the year, Georgia gained 68,000 jobs, or 1.7 percent, from 3,903,700 in October 2011.