Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Georgia’s state government shows strength in April employment

Georgia added 4,300 nonfarm jobs in April, seasonally adjusted, of which 3,000 occurred in state government employment, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The jump in state government jobs was the largest one-month increase for Georgia since June 2012. Overall, government added 2,200 jobs over the month, as an 800-job decline in local governments partially offset the state government’s growth. There was no change in the number of Federal government employees in the state.
In contrast, the private sector recorded only a 2,100 net job gain as increases in professional and business services (4,800 jobs) and leisure and hospitality (1,400 jobs) were partially offset by losses in other industries.
Manufacturing, which continues to struggle in this state, lost 1,800 jobs in April to stand at 354,200 jobs, slightly below the 354,400 jobs it recorded in April 2012.
Since April 2012, Georgia has added 68,100 nonfarm jobs, an increase of 1.7 percent, or approximately the same rate of growth as the nation as a whole.
Professional and business services have led the way with an increase of 30,100 jobs over the year, while leisure and hospitality establishments have added 17,700 jobs.
The state continues to increase its strength in services, while manufacturing fails to keep the pace set by the service industries.
Over the year, manufacturing stands at approximately the same employment level, while construction jobs increased by 1.9 percent.
In contrast, professional and business services’ employment grew by 5.4 percent and leisure and hospitality firms gained 4.5 percentage points.
Local governments have been the largest job losers, dropping 6,600 jobs or 1.6 percent of the sector’s employment over the 12 months.
Despite the good showing in April, state government employment remains at approximately the same level as a year ago, down by a slight 0.2 percentage points.
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Monday, May 20, 2013

Georgia’s unemployment rate drops as people drop out of the labor force

Georgia’s unemployment rate declined 8.2 percent in April, a drop of 0.2 percentage points from March, seasonally adjusted, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as more than 8,000 people stopped looking for work and dropped out of the labor force for a variety of reasons.
The decline over the month was deemed statistically significant by BLS and occurred as the number of employed people rose by 3,256, according to the household survey, while the number of unemployed declined by 11,314.
The number of persons unemployed declined below the 400,000 mark in the state for the first time since December 2008. At that time, the state’s unemployment rate stood at 8.1 percent.
One way a state can lower its overall unemployment rate is by having people drop out of the labor force, essentially becoming neither employed nor actively looking for work. That appears to have been the case this month.
If those 8,058 people who dropped out of the labor force had stayed in the unemployed ranks, the state’s unemployment rate would have actually risen to 8.4 percent of the labor force.
Over the year, Georgia’s unemployment rate declined 0.9 percentage points from an April 2012 rate of 9.1 percent. The decline in the rate occurred as the number of people employed rose by 56,613, while the number of unemployed dropped by 40,604.
BLS said that Georgia’s 8.2 unemployment rate was not statistically significantly different than the nation’s rate in April, as the state continues to follow national trends.
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