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Unemployment slips to 8.3 percent for metro Savannah
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ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor reported that the preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in metro Savannah declined to 8.3 percent in April, down five-tenths of a percentage point from a revised 8.8 percent in March. Meanwhile, the number of unemployed workers in the metro area decreased to 14,618 down 806 from 15,424 in March.

Unemployment in Effingham County for April was at 8.2 percent, down from 8.9 percent in March. Unemployment in Effingham for April 2009 was at 7.5 percent. The labor force also has receded from April 2009, down from 28,712 to 28,456, according to the state Department of Labor.

The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 10.4 percent in April, down one-tenth of a percentage point from a revised 10.5 percent in March. This is the 31st consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national rate, which is now 9.9 percent. The state’s April jobless rate was up 1.2 percentage points from 9.2 percent at this same time last year. The jobless rate in metro Savannah in April 2009 was 7.4 percent.

Also in April, 1,977 laid-off workers in metro Savannah filed initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, a decrease of 179, or 8.3 percent, from 2,156 filed in April 2009. Statewide, 60,661 laid-off workers filed initial claims, a decline of 23,685, or 28.1 percent, from 84,346 filed in April 2009. Most of the first time claims were filed in trade, manufacturing, construction, and administrative and support services.

The state showed a modest increase in new jobs in April for the third consecutive month. The number of jobs increased 26,900, or seven-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,794,700 in March to 3,821,600. However, the number of jobs remains less than in April 2009, when there were 3,912,700 payroll jobs, 2.3 percent or 91,100 more than this year.

Metro Savannah’s job market also showed a modest improvement for the second consecutive month. The number of payroll jobs in metro Savannah increased 1,300, or nine-tenths of a percentage point, from 149,900 in March to 151,200.

Unemployment was lowest in Long and Oconee counties, at 6.6 percent. Joblessness for April was highest in Hancock County, at 20.3 percent.