County unemployment rises in MayPublished 11:29am Friday, June 15, 2012
Morgan County’s unemployment rate increased during the month of May to 7.4 percent, nearly a full percentage point hike from April.
However, the numbers are still much better than this time last year when 8.4 percent of the county’s workforce didn’t have a job.
The number of unemployed persons increased by more than 500 between April and May to 4,191. The number of unemployed persons last month was still less than the 4,840 from May 2011.
While the number of unemployed persons fluctuated greatly, the number of employed persons only fell from 52,993 in April to 52,662 in May. There were also more employed persons in May 2011, 52,896.
The overall workforce also shrank by nearly 900 from last year to 56,853 this year.
Overall, the state unemployment rate also grew from 7.2 percent in April to 7.4 percent in May. The jobless rate in May 2011 was 9.3 percent, but the state’s overall workforce shrank by 50,000 from last year.
“While it’s certainly never a good thing to report an increase in the unemployment rate, I have to say this one was expected,” said Tom Surtees, Alabama Department of Industrial Relations Director. “We traditionally see an increase in the May and June rates as more people enter the workforce in the form of new graduates and education staff who aren’t working during the summer months. In addition, the national unemployment rate rose slightly, and the states usually follow the nation’s lead.”