GA Regional Commissions see a rise in unemployment rate

However, WalletHub says Georgia has 5th best financial recovery in the US since the pandemic shutdown

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said last week that all 12 regional commissions in the state recorded increases in unemployment rates. However, despite this, claims were down in the Atlanta, Coastal Georgia, Heart of Georgia, Middle Georgia, River Valley, and Southwest Georgia Regional Commissions. 

“Job numbers are up across Georgia, and our focus in 2022 is encouraging people to enter the workforce to help businesses provide the goods and services necessary for Georgia’s economy to continue to grow,” Butler said in a press release.

The labor force saw an increase in all regional commissions with employment up in the northeast Georgia region, which includes Walton County, the Atlanta Regional Commission, which includes Gwinnett County as well as the Central Savannah River, Coastal Georgia, River Valley, Southwest Georgia, and the Three Rivers Regional Commissions. 

In the NE Georgia Regional Commission, which includes Barrow, Clarke, Elbert, Greene, Jackson, Jasper, Madison, Morgan, Newton, Oconee, Oglethorpe, and Walton counties, the December preliminary unemployment rate was up two tenths to 2.1 % over the month. The rate was 4.8 % a year ago.

The labor force was up 1,280 over the month and up 5,722 over the year to 316,036 and the number of employed was up 484 over the year and up 13,914 over the year. to 309,248.

However, initial claims were up 95 (13 %) over the month although they were down 5,013 (-86 %) to 813 initials claims. The initial claims were up over the month in Administrative and Support Services and Accommodation and Food Services, and down over the year in Health Care and Social Assistance and Accommodation and Food Services. There were 7,594 jobs posted on Employ Georgia in this region.

Walton County, however, bucked the trend and has continued a decrease in initial unemployment claims. It was down 13 for the month or 11.2 % from 116 in Nov. 2021 to 103 in Dec. 2021. This is down 88.7 % from 809 a year ago. Initial unemployment claims were also down 65 or 5.7 % in Gwinnett County from 1,146 in November 2021 to 1,081 in December. In December 2020 initial claims in Gwinnett were 7,900. This is down 6,819 or 86.3 % from the initial claims in December last year .

In the Atlanta Regional Commission, which includes Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, and Rockdale counties, the preliminary unemployment rate for December 2021 was up two-tenths to 2.4 % over the month. The rate was 6.0 % a year ago. The labor force was up 9,044 over the month and up 45,904 over the year to 2,483,760. The number of employed was up 4,454 over the month and up 132,840 over the year to 2,423,799. In the Atlanta Regional Commission, the labor force and number of employed were all time highs.

In this region, initial claims were down 314 or 4% over the month and down 43,258 or 86% over the year to 7,120. There were 78,946 jobs posted on Employ Georgia.

Visit to learn more about career opportunities, Employ Georgia, and other GDOL services for job seekers.

With the U.S. gaining 199,000 jobs in December (below the previous month’s 249,000 jobs) WalletHub recently released updated rankings for the states whose unemployment rates are bouncing back most and Georgia came in a respectable 5th place. In order to arrive at this conclusion, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on five key metrics that compare unemployment rate statistics from the latest month for which data is available (December 2021) to key dates in 2019 and 2020. The top five states were Nebraska at 1.7%, Utah at 1.9%, Oklahoma at 2.3%, Montana 2.5% and Georgia at 2.6 %. The bottom five were New York a 6.2%, California at 6.5%, New Jersey at 6.3%, Nevada at 6.4% and Hawaii at 5.7% (Note: The change in unemployment over the period did impact the placing which explains why Hawaii at 5.7 % has a slower recovery than New Jersey at 6.5%).

The 5th placing of the unemployment recovery is Georgia was calculated by the metrics below.

  • -20.40% Change in Unemployment (December 2021 vs December 2019)
    • 135,906 unemployed people in December 2021 vs 170,727 in December 2019;
    • 6th best recovery in the U.S.
  • -21.82% Change in Unemployment (December 2021 vs January 2020)
    • 135,906 unemployed people in December 2021 vs 173,827 in January 2020;
    • 6th best recovery in the U.S.
  • -49.87% Change in Unemployment (December 2021 vs December 2020)
    • 135,906 unemployed people in December 2021 vs 271,108 in December 2020;
    • 3rd best recovery in the U.S.
  • 0.07% Change in Not Seasonally Adjusted Continued Claims (December 2021 vs December 2019)
    • 25,151 continued claims in December 2021 vs 25,133 in December 2019;
    • 13th worst recovery in the U.S.
  • 2.6% Unemployment Rate (December 2021)
    • 7th lowest unemployment rate in the U.S.

To view the full report you can visit:

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