MONTGOMERY – Gov. Kay Ivey’s office Friday morning released the state’s latest unemployment numbers. According to the Alabama Department of Labor (ADOL), Alabama’s preliminary, seasonally adjusted October unemployment rate is 3.6 percent, down from September’s previous record-tying rate of 3.8 percent, and well below October 2016’s rate of 6.1 percent.
Cullman County’s rate is again among the lowest in the state, at 3 percent. That’s up slightly from last month’s rate of 2.8 percent and significantly lower than October 2016’s 5.4 percent.
“We had great news last month, when we announced that Alabama’s unemployment rate had tied its lowest ever. Today, our news is even bigger! Alabama’s unemployment rate has dropped even more, registering a new record low!” said Ivey. “What we are doing is working, and as a result, the people of Alabama are working.”
“Additionally, today’s numbers show that we currently have the fewest number of unemployed people in history, measuring some 77,000; but that means 77,000 Alabamians, men and women, are still without work. I will persist in my efforts to put every Alabamian who wants to work in a good paying job by recruiting high-wage, high-skill industries to Alabama.”
ADOL says October’s rate represents 77,358 unemployed persons, the lowest number ever recorded, compared to 82,562 in September and 133,875 in October 2016. 2,079,576 people were counted as employed, compared to 2,069,094 in September and 2,046,861 in October 2016.
“As we continue to see our unemployment rate drop, Alabama’s businesses continue to hire and support real jobs in our economy,” said Fitzgerald Washington, Sec. of ADOL. “Our wage and salary employment figures are currently at the third highest level since we began keeping records. There are nearly 30,000 more jobs today than there were in October of last year. Through job fairs and the services provided at our Career Centers located throughout the state, we are helping employers find the employees they are looking for.”
Over the year, wage and salary employment increased 29,400, with gains in the leisure and hospitality sector (+7,100), the professional and business services sector (+6,400), and the manufacturing sector (+6,100), among others.
Wage and salary employment increased in October by 6,500. Monthly gains were seen in the trade, transportation, and utilities sector (+3,300), the education and health services sector (+2,700), and the government sector (+2,200), among others.
Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are: Shelby County at 2.6 percent; Marshall, Madison, Lee and Cullman Counties at 3 percent; and Tuscaloosa and Elmore Counties at 3.1 percent. Counties with the highest unemployment rates are: Wilcox County at 8.9 percent, Clarke County at 6.6 percent and Lowndes County at 6.4 percent.
Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are: Alabaster, Homewood and Vestavia Hills at 2.4 percent, Hoover at 2.6 percent and Madison at 2.7 percent. Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are: Prichard and Selma at 6.5 percent, Anniston at 4.9 percent and Bessemer at 4.8 percent.
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