January 30, 2014

Metro Dalton’s unemployment rate rises slightly

Metro Dalton’s unemployment rate increased to 9.5 percent in December 2013, up from 9.4 percent in November, according to the Georgia Department of Labor.

The rate was 11 percent in December 2012.

Metro Dalton is Whitfield and Murray counties.

The rate rose because the number of new layoffs, represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits, increased in several sectors, including manufacturing, administrative and support services, health care and social assistance, trade, transportation and warehousing, and construction.

The number of jobs in Metro Dalton declined in December to 63,100, a loss of 600 jobs mostly in the service industries. The number of jobs in Metro Dalton also declined over-the-year. There were 300 jobs, or 0.5 percent, fewer than in December 2012, when there were 63,400 jobs. Most of the annual losses came in textile manufacturing.  

Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 5.2 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 10.2 percent.  

Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for December was 7.4 percent, down from 7.6 percent in November. The rate was 8.7 percent in December a year ago.

Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at


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