ATLANTA—State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said Thursday that the preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in metro Savannah area increased to 8.5 percent in May, up one-tenth of a percentage point from a revised 8.4 percent in April. The April rate was first reported at a preliminary 8.5 percent. The jobless rate in metro Savannah in May a year ago was 8.3 percent.
The rate increased because about 2,400 new job seekers entered the labor force looking for work and while about 2,000 found a job, about 400 did not.
The lowest area rate, at 7.2 percent, was recorded in metro Athens, while the highest, at 12 percent, was in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region in the Dublin area.
Effingham County’s unemployment rate for May 2011 was 8.2 percent. Oconee County, at 5.8 percent, had the lowest unemployment rate while Jenkins County, at 19.8 percent, had the highest rate.
The preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in the Coastal Georgia area increased to 8.9 percent in May, up one-tenth of a percentage point from a revised 8.8 percent in April. The jobless rate in the Coastal Georgia area in May a year ago was also 8.8 percent.
Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.8 percent from April to May. The April rate was first reported at a preliminary 9.9 percent, but was revised. The state’s jobless rate was 10 percent in May a year ago.
May marked the 46th consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 9.1 percent, up from 9.0 percent in April.