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Metro Savannah jobless rate inches upward
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ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Labor announced that the preliminary unemployment rate in metro Savannah rose to 9.2 percent in July, up two-tenths of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in June. The rate was 9.5 percent in July 2011.

The preliminary unemployment rate in the Coastal Georgia area rose to 9.7 percent in July, up one-tenth of a percentage point from 9.6 percent in June. The rate was 10.1 percent in July 2011.

The rate increased because the labor force grew by 2,228 job seekers, and while most found jobs within the month, 418 did not.

Unemployment in Effingham County for July was at 8.1 percent, unchanged from June. Effingham’s jobless rate in July 2011 was 8.6 percent.

Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 7.4 percent, while metro Dalton had the highest at 12.5 percent. Athens has had the lowest area rate, or tied for the lowest, each month since December 2009. Dalton has had the highest area rate since August 2011.

Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 9.3 percent in July, up three-tenths of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in June. The jobless rate was 10 percent in July a year ago.

The number of jobs in the state dropped by 17,900, or five-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,931,900 in June to 3,914,000 in July. There were 20,600 jobs lost among seasonal workers in the local public schools, but some of that loss was offset because the private sector added 5,600 jobs.

In metro Savannah, jobs increased to 152,300, up by 300 from June, and up 1,000 from 151,300 in July 2011.