Alabama jobless rate falls to 5.4 percent

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The governor’s office says Alabama’s unemployment rate is down to 5.4 percent.

The jobless rate announced Friday for August is three-tenths of a percent less than the July number, and it is well below the August 2015 unemployment rate of 6.1 percent.

Unemployment in Alabama is still worse than average nationally, with the U.S. jobless rate at 4.9 percent.

The August unemployment rate represents 116,361 people without jobs in Alabama, compared to 123,034 in July.

Shelby County has the state’s lowest unemployment rate at 4.2 percent. Wilcox County is worst with a jobless rate of 13.8 percent.

“We’ve had a good jobs week in Alabama,” said Governor Robert Bentley in a press release. “There was a huge job fair in the Wiregrass region of the state, with record attendance.  We also announced more than 100 jobs in Houston County.  And in addition to marking the lowest unemployment rate of my administration, we can also say that we have the least number of unemployed Alabamians in more than eight years.”

In Mobile County, the unemployment rate fell to 6.5-percent in August 2016 compared to 6.7-percent one month before, which is also a full percentage point down from August 2015 (7.5-percent).

There is even better news out of Baldwin County where the unemployment rate has fallen to below 5-percent. Last month, the rate was 4.9-percent compared to 5.6-percent one year before.

“Not only did we see the unemployment rate drop, but we also saw the number of jobs our economy supports increase,” said Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington in a press release.  “Our total wage and salary employment is reaching levels that we haven’t seen in nearly eight years.  Manufacturing employment is at its second highest level since 2009. These numbers show us that employers have jobs and are hiring Alabamians.”

Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are: Vestavia Hills at 3.7%, Homewood at 3.9%, and Hoover at 4.0%.  Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are: Selma at 10.2%, Prichard at 9.5%, and Bessemer at 8.9%.

Full Breakdown of Unemployment Rate by County, August 2016

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