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Metro Savannah jobless rate jumps to 8.8 percent
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ATLANTA—The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that the preliminary unemployment rate in metro Savannah rose to 8.8 percent in December, up four-tenths of a percentage point from 8.4 percent in November. The jobless rate in metro Savannah in December a year ago was 9.0 percent.

The rate increased because there were layoffs in manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, transportation and warehousing, administrative and support services, and accommodations and food services.

The preliminary December 2011 unemployment rate for Effingham County is 7.6 percent, which is unchanged from the November 2011 revised rate. It is down from the revised December 2010 rate of 8.4 percent.

Metro Athens and Warner Robins had the lowest area rates at 7.3 percent, while metro Dalton had the highest at 12.1 percent.

Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined in December for the third straight month, dropping to 9.7 percent, down from a revised 9.8 percent in November. The jobless rate was 10.4 percent in December a year ago.

The state rate declined because 11,500 Georgians went back to work in December. Statewide, there were 600 new construction jobs, and manufacturing grew by 400 jobs. Job gains also came in information services and trade and transportation.