The Georgia Department of Labor announced today, in a press release, that the unemployment rate in the Northeast Georgia region declined to 7.4 percent in March, down four-tenths of a percentage point from 7.8 percent in February. The rate was 8.5 percent in March a year ago.
The rate declined because the number of unemployed people decreased to 21,991, down by 1,163 from 23,154 in February. There were fewer new layoffs, which were represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits. Claims fell by 207 from 2,014 in February to 1,807 in March.
The decreases came mostly in construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, transportation, and warehousing, and health care and social assistance. And, the number of initial claims was down over-the-year by 472 from 2,279 in March 2012. Most of the over-the-year decline came in construction, manufacturing, trade, administrative and support services, and health care and social assistance.
Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 5.9 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 10.4 percent.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for March was 8.4 percent, down from 8.6 percent in February. The rate was 9.1 percent in March a year ago.