Georgia’s unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent in October from 8.3 percent in September, hitting the lowest level in nearly five years, the state labor department reported Thursday.
“We’ve seen Georgia gain almost 30,000 jobs over the last two months,” state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement. “And, the good thing about the job creation is that it’s pretty much through all sectors.”
The jobless rate, which increased during the summer months as school employees were laid off, has declined from 8.7 percent in August and 8.8 percent from a year ago. While improving, Georgia still lags the national rate of 7.3 percent.
The number of jobs in Georgia rose to 4,078,700 in October, which is the largest number since November 2008. The number increased by 22,700 from September.
The job increases came in trade and transportation — 6,800; education and health services — 5,400; government — 3,900; other services — 1,400; and 1,100 each in manufacturing, construction, professional and business services, and leisure and hospitality. Financial services added 600 new jobs, while information services gained 200.
During the past year, Georgia gained 85,500 jobs. The increases came in several sectors, including: professional and business services — 30,600; leisure and hospitality — 19,900; education and health services — 17,600; and trade and transportation — 16,300.
“Most importantly, we saw construction again show strength in that over the year more than 7,500 jobs have been created in construction in Georgia,” Butler said.
Government has lost 8,100 jobs in the past year.
There were 40,132 initial claims for unemployment insurance in October, an increase of 17 percent from September. The claims were primarily in manufacturing, most of which were temporary, and administrative and support services. But initial claims were down 22.1 percent from a year ago.