Georgia's labor commissioner said December showed some promising job growth across the state, and the state unemployment rate dropped a bit, as well.
"December is yet another month where we have seen job growth throughout the state,” said Labor Commissioner Mark Butler in his monthly employment report for the State of Georgia. "We more than doubled our job growth from November, which is very promising, considering how challenging of a year this has been. Georgia has gained back 82 % of the jobs we lost at the beginning of the pandemic and continue to remain strong in economic growth and business development.”
Butler said the unemployment rate dropped to 5.6%, which is one-tenth of a percentage point lower than the November rate.
Among the highlights in the report:
- Jobs in December increased by 44,700, reaching a total of 4,558,900. That number is down 81,200 compared to this same time last year. The job total listed online at EmployGeorgia has more than doubled since the beginning of the pandemic from the April 2020 listing of just 73,000 jobs.
- Of the over 170,000 jobs currently listed on EmployGeorgia, over half of them advertise annual salaries over $40,000. In many cases, employers are willing to train quality candidates and assist with attainment of additional credentials. The sectors with the most over-the-month job gains included Administrative and Support Services, 10,900, Accommodation and Food Services, 9,700, Retail Trade, 7,800, Transportation and Warehousing, 3,200, and Durable Goods Manufacturing, 2,700.
- In December, the number of employed Georgians was down 25,726 to reach a total of 4,841,339, but the number of employed was up by 561,415 since April.
- Georgia’s labor force in December saw a decrease of 32,978, reaching a total of 5,127,620. However, the number is up 233,224 since the start of the pandemic in April.
Butler said the state posted an increase in initial unemployment claims for December despite the good news about job creation.
Butler said in December, initial unemployment claims increased by 19% (20,110) since November to reach 124,285. Since week ending March 21, 2020, 4,305,242 regular UI initial claims have been processed, more than the nine years prior to the pandemic combined (4 million). Last week, regular UI initial claims totaled 35,912, down 1,127 over the week. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 346,631 PUA claims have been processed.
Resources for reemployment assistance along with Information on filing an unemployment claim and details on how employers can file partial claims can be found on the agency's webpage at dol.georgia.gov.
For more information on jobs and current labor force date, visit the Georgia Labor Force Market Explorer at www.explorer.gdol.ga.gov to view a comprehensive report.