Jobless numbers down locally

Published 2:43 am Thursday, May 26, 2016

More people were working in Covington County in April, according to jobless data recently released by the governor’s office.

In April, the county’s jobless rate was 6.2 percent down from March’s 7 percent and down slightly from last April’s 6.5 percent.

Some 14,292 people were employed in April up from 14,246 in March and 14,290 last April.

Statewide, April’s unemployment rate was 6.1 percent down from March’s 6.2 percent.

“Every aspect of this month’s jobs data reflects positively on Alabama’s economy,” the governor said. “More people are working and more jobs are filled. In fact, we are supporting almost 100,000 more jobs now than we were at the height of the recession. We are continuously working to keep that momentum going, with events like last week’s huge job fair in Birmingham that drew more than 5,000 jobseekers.”

Alabama Department of Labor Commissioner Fitzgerald Washington echoed the governor.

“This is a promising month for us,” he said. “There are more people looking for work and more people working this month than there have been all year. The number of people who are unemployed is down. We continue to see growth in our wage and salary employment, surpassing economists’ growth expectations by nearly 8,000 jobs only four months into the year.”

The most gains were seen in the trade, transportation and utilities sector; the professional and business sector; and the leisure and hospitality sector.

All major Alabama cities, metro area and 67 Alabama counties experienced drops in the unemployment rate.

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are: Shelby County at 4 percent; Elmore County at 4.5 percent and Cherokee County at 4.6 percent.

Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are Vestavia Hills at 3.4 percent, Homewood at 3.7 percent and Hoover at 3.9 percent.

Neighboring counties had the following unemployment rates:

• Butler: 6.7 percent;

• Crenshaw: 5.8 percent;

• Coffee: 5.6 percent;

• Escambia: 6 percent;

• Conecuh: 7.8 percent;

• Geneva: 5.6 percent