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Work Force Development

DEC. 20 - Georgia's unemployment rate jumps to 10.1 percent in November

The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) reported yesterday that the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 10.1 percent in November, up three-tenths of a percentage point from 9.8 percent in October. The preliminary October rate of 9.9 percent reported last month has been revised downward by one-tenth of a percentage point. The rate was 10.2 percent in November 2009. This is the 38th consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 9.8 percent.

In November, the number of payroll jobs increased 7,000, or two-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,842,500 in October to 3,849,500 in November. Most of the increases came in retail trade, professional and business services, and educational and health services. However, the number of jobs remains 5,100, or one-tenth of a percentage point, less than in November 2009, when there were 3,854,600 payroll jobs.

"The unemployment rate is up because of increases in new layoffs and in the number of long-term unemployed," said State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond. "Georgia's economy must have sustained job growth in the private sector. I encourage job seekers and employers to consider utilizing Georgia Work$ (GW$) as a means to secure a new job and to reduce the costs and risks of hiring new employees."

GW$ allows unemployed job seekers who register with the GDOL to receive training from participating employers for 24 hours per week for up to six weeks. They will also receive a stipend of up to $600 to off-set work-related expenses. There is no cost to employers. Since its inception in 2003, more than 63 percent of GW$ participants have obtained work and Georgia employers have saved nearly $21 million in costs related to hiring and training new employees. Additional information about GW$ is available at, any GDOL career center, or by calling 1-877-WORKS09.

There were 252,200 long-term unemployed Georgians in November (those who have been out of work for 27 weeks or longer). This represents an increase of 11,600, or 4.8 percent, from 240,600 long-term unemployed in October and an increase of 94,400, or 59.8 percent, from 157,800 in November 2009. The long-term unemployed now account for 53.7 percent of the 469,702 jobless workers in Georgia.

Also, 67,714 laid-off workers filed initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits in November, an increase of 10,220, or 17.8, from 57,494 in October. However, there was an over-the-year decrease of 4,584 initial claims, or 6.3 percent, from 72,298 filed in November 2009. Most of the first-time claims were filed in manufacturing, trade, administrative and support services, and construction.

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