MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Alabama’s preliminary, seasonally adjusted January 2019 unemployment rate is 3.8 percent, unchanged from December 2018’s rate, and below January 2018’s rate of 3.9 percent. Following end-of-year revisions, 3.8 percent marks record low unemployment rate for Alabama.
Cullman County’s rate ticked up to 3.7 percent in January 2019, up from 3.0 percent in December 2018 and steady with January 2018’s rate of 3.7 percent. Cullman County remains tied for the second-lowest rate in the state.
For eight consecutive months, the number of people counted as employed in Alabama has reached record highs. In January 2019, this number measured 2,123,398, breaking December 2018’s revised count of 2,120,769.
“People are working in Alabama. Employers are hiring in Alabama. We continue to report record numbers of people with jobs, and we are seeing fewer and fewer people counted as unemployed, which is what we like to see,” said Fitzgerald Washington, secretary of the Alabama Department of Labor.
The number of people counted as unemployed in January measured 83,406, which is the third lowest count in history. A year ago, this number measured 86,250.
“While maintaining our record low unemployment rate, we’ve also seen some great over-the-year growth in some of our high wage industries,” continued Washington. “Both the construction, information, and manufacturing sectors saw significant increases from January 2018 to January 2019.”
Over the year, wage and salary employment increased 31,500, with gains in the leisure and hospitality sector (+7,600), the trade, transportation, and utilities sector (+4,400), and the construction sector (+4,200), among others.
The construction sector experienced job growth measuring 5.0 percent over-the-year, the information sector experienced growth measuring 3.9 percent and the manufacturing sector experienced job growth measuring 1.4 percent over-the-year.
Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are Shelby County at 3.2 percent, Marshall and Cullman Counties at 3.7 percent, and Tuscaloosa, Morgan, Madison and Elmore Counties at 3.8 percent. Counties with the highest unemployment rates are Wilcox County at 10.5 percent, Lowndes County at 8.2 percent and Clarke County at 7.9 percent.
Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are Homewood at 2.7 percent, Vestavia Hills at 2.9 percent and Alabaster at 3.0 percent. Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are Selma at 8.8 percent, Prichard at 7.5 percent and Anniston at 6.1 percent.