Metro Gainesville closed out 2017 with record highs for jobs, employed residents and work force, according to State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler.
According to numbers released Thursday morning, the Hall County Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) ended the year with 400 new jobs, thousands more employed residents and a much larger work force. Unemployment fell by .7 percent. Gainesville ranked fifth in Georgia for job creation among 14 MSAs tracked by the GDOL.
“This is a very good year for the Gainesville area,” Butler said. “All of the major indicators trended in the right direction. In fact, records were set. I’m expecting the same will continue in 2018.”
In December metro Gainesville added 400 new jobs to end the year with a record-high 91,300 jobs. The area added 2,600 since last Jan. 1. The previous record high was 90,900 in November. Most of the yearly job growth came in the service industries, state government, and the goods-producing sector, including manufacturing and construction.
The metro area also added 498 more employed residents last month. At year’s end, metro Gainesville posted a record-high 96,994 employed residents, up by 3,431 since last Jan. 1. The previous record high was 96,496 in November.
Metro Gainesville’s labor force, the number of residents with jobs and those unemployed but actively looking for work, grew by 414 in December. The area added 2,883 over the year to end 2017 with a labor force of 100,529. The previous record high was a month earlier.
In December 422 initial claims for unemployment insurance were filed, up by 7 percent from the previous month. Claims are down by 23 percent from 547 as compared to December 2016. Most of the decrease in claims came in manufacturing.
Meanwhile, the metro area’s unemployment rate fell from 4.2 percent to 3.5 over the 12-month cycle. The December rate, at 3.5 percent, was down from the previous month by .1 percent.
Employ Georgia, the GDOL’s online job listing service at employgeorgia.com showed 769 new active job postings in metro Gainesville at year’s end.