Jobless rate falls; still No. 2 in state

Jobless rate falls; still No. 2 in state

By KEVIN BOWDEN
Staff Reporter
Heading into the holiday season, which traditionally includes holiday hiring by local retailers, Obion County’s unemployment rate dipped slightly from 13.9 percent in August to 13.2 percent this past month. Obion County still had the second highest unemployment rate in the state and the highest unemployment rate in the region.
Tennessee’s unemployment rate went from 8.5 percent to 8.3 percent during the same period. Tennessee’s September jobless rate was slightly higher than the 7.8 percent September unemployment rate for the U.S.
The state Department of Labor and Workforce Development released its monthly jobless report Thursday.
Rural West Tennessee continues to dominate the state’s top 10 list of counties with the highest unemployment rates.
In September, the unemployment rate declined in 94 counties and increased in only one county.
Obion County’s 13.2 percent unemployment rate translates to 1,810 people out of work in September, according to the state’s monthly jobless report,
Elsewhere across northwest Tennessee:
• Weakley County’s September unemployment rate was 13.1 percent, translating to 2,080 people out of work.
• Lake County’s September unemployment rate was 10 percent, translating to 280 people out of work.
• Dyer County’s September unemployment rate was 11.3 percent, translating to 1,950 people out of work.
• Gibson County’s September unemployment rate was 11.3 percent, translating to 2,420 people out of work.
Of the 10 counties with the state’s highest jobless rate last month, West Tennessee has six counties on the list — Obion, Weakley, Lauderdale, Gibson, Dyer and Hardeman counties.
Across the border in southwest Kentucky, Fulton County’s 16.7 percent September unemployment rate was that state’s highest jobless rate for the month.
The Bluegrass State is experiencing some job growth.
Unemployment rates declined in 108 Kentucky counties from September 2011 to September 2012, according to the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.
The jobless rate increased in 12 Kentucky counties during that period, while Fulton County’s jobless rate was unchanged from August to September.
Staff Reporter Kevin Bowden may be contacted by email at kmbowden@ucmessenger.com.

Published in The Messenger 10.26.12

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