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Jobless rate in Gainesville falls slightly in July
Unemployment at 9.2 percent but many have given up job search
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Metro Gainesville's jobless rate dips slightly to 9.1 percent in July

The jobless rate in metro Gainesville dipped slightly to 9.1 percent in July, the Georgia Department of Labor reported today.

The preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in was down one-tenth of a percentage point from a revised 9.2 percent in June. Meanwhile, the number of unemployed workers in the metro area, which includes all of Hall County, fell to 7,958, down 82 from 8,040.

The state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined slightly to 9.9 percent in July, down one-tenth of a percentage point from a revised 10.0 percent in June. This is the 34th consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, now 9.5 percent.

The jobless rate in Hall County in July 2009 was 9.3 percent.

Unemployment in the Georgia Mountains region fell from 9.4 percent in June to 9.2 percent in July.

The slight dip in the state's jobless rate is mostly credited to the labor force shrinking by 21,043 from June to July as long-term unemployed workers became discouraged and gave up their job search. Coupled with the increase of 19,026 workers in June giving up the search, Georgia's labor force has deteriorated by more than 40,000 during the past two months.

This is the first time since 2001 that Georgia has experienced significant reductions in the labor force for two consecutive months.

The number of payroll jobs in July decreased 21,600, or six-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,827,200 in June to 3,805,600. And, the number of jobs remains less than in July 2009, when there were 3,836,000 payroll jobs, eight-tenths of a percentage point, or 30,400 more than this year.

In metro Gainesville, the number of payroll jobs decreased 500, from 70,700 in June to 70,200.

Also in July, 973 laid-off workers in metro Gainesville filed initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits, an increase of 92, or 10.4 percent, from 881 in June.

Statewide, 68,089 laid-off workers filed initial claims for benefits in July, an increase of 3,295, or 5.1 percent, from 64,794 in June. However, there was a decline of 25,899 initial claims, or 27.6 percent, from 93,988 filed in July 2009.

Most of the first-time claims were filed in manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, administrative and support services, and construction.

Local area unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at the department's website