• 81°

Jobless rate waffles slightly in October

Covington County saw a slight increase in the number of unemployed residents last month.

The county’s unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent up from September’s 8.6 percent.

The rate was above the state average of 8.9 percent and below the national average of 9.3 percent.

Statewide, the average remained steady.

“For nine consecutive months we have been able to announce that Alabama hasn’t seen an increase in its monthly unemployment rate,” said Tom Surtees, director of industrial relations. “This is certainly a statistic that makes us happy. The department is continuing to pay less in benefits, and initial claims remain below 2008 and 2009 levels. These are all positive signs for Alabama’s economic recovery.”

Alabama’s monthly unemployment rate has remained unchanged or dropped since January 2010, when the rate was 11.1 percent.

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates were: Shelby at 6.8 percent, Coffee at 7.1 percent, and Madison at 7.1 percent.

Counties with the highest unemployment rates were: Wilcox at 20.1 percent, Greene at 18.4 percent, and Dallas at 17.2 percent.

– Kendra Bolling