Georgia unemployment falls to 10 percent in March

Georgia’s unemployment rate fell to 10 percent in March — down from a revised 10.2 percent in February, the state labor department said Monday.

The state’s jobless rate was also 10.2 percent a year ago.

“The drop in the unemployment rate is encouraging, but I’m more pleased that we’ve now had two consecutive months of job growth, coupled with fewer layoffs,” state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement. “It appears that employers are growing more confident that our economy is improving.”

There were 3,812,700 payroll jobs in March — up four-tenths of a percentage point from February, the labor department said.

Sixty percent of the new jobs were added in leisure and hospitality, including 7,000 at eating and drinking establishments. Jobs were also added in manufacturing, wholesale electronic equipment, design of computer systems, transportation and warehousing, educational services, and administrative and support services.

Also, 50,331 laid-off workers filed initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits in March — a drop of 9.4 percent from February. Most of the first-time claims were filed in manufacturing, trade, administrative and support services, and construction, the labor department said.

On the negative side, there were 261,500 Georgians in March who have have been out of work for at least 27 weeks. This represents an increase of 27.7 percent from a year ago, but a drop of six-tenths of a percentage point from February.

The long-term unemployed now account for a record-high 55.7 percent of the 469,103 jobless workers in Georgia, the labor department said.

March marked the 42nd consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 8.8 percent.

- Henry Unger, The Biz Beat

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27 comments Add your comment


April 18th, 2011
12:07 pm

Just curious….What size was the labor pool? Did it decrease as well? Also, how many LLC’s were initiated? If the workforce increased and more businesses were created, then this is good news.

Joe Biden

April 18th, 2011
12:26 pm

See….the stimulus is working!

Typical Democrat

April 18th, 2011
12:27 pm

This proves that we need to raise taxes on the rich!

Wondering ?

April 18th, 2011
12:28 pm

Just wondering how Obama’s plan to solve America’s problems is working out for all of you…please post.


April 18th, 2011
12:35 pm

@ wondering – as well as the plan George Bush did to get us in this mess from the start.

Ancient Alien

April 18th, 2011
12:37 pm

Why do HR not hire people because of credit report when they have lost their job and or home? They act as though nothing happened to people that lost their job the last three years but will not hire you when you have a clean criminal background but your credit took a hit from economy.

Elliot Garcia

April 18th, 2011
12:40 pm

Alien, most HR people will take a look at credit and if it is one instance of poor credit, it is taken into consideration (i.e. job loss, divorce, etc.) If it is a history of poor credit going back 7 years, you will not get hired, especially for a firm where you will be handling cash, checks or general accounting….


April 18th, 2011
12:44 pm

Still under-employed here. Not accepting gov’t handouts either.
Very competitive out there for the few jobs that are worth a hoot, but this article/paper won’t tell you that.


April 18th, 2011
12:46 pm

Oh wow this economy is just booming. I just had 25 job offers this morning and gas is $1.25 a gallon…. and back to reality. This economy stinks, there are no jobs out there and we are on the verge of a major depression.


April 18th, 2011
1:26 pm

Hey, lets all become bartenders and waitresses…

Poke 'Em With A Stick

April 18th, 2011
1:32 pm

I’ve been underemployed since 2009. Haven’t ever collected unemployment, but have done some pretty menial, brainless jobs. Who is counting me?


April 18th, 2011
1:50 pm

The economy is gradually showing signs of revival, said University of West Georgia economist Joey Smith.
“Things are improving, not fast … but the rate of improvement is increasing,” Smith said. “There will be at least one more year of pain when it comes to the state budgets.”

Some states, such as California, are facing large deficits that may take years to balance. Smith said recent state figures indicate an increase in individual income taxes, pointing to people paying their taxes earlier this year or having more income to be taxed. It could mean that more are working as well.


April 18th, 2011
2:25 pm

Wondering: since GA is a Republican controlled state (for the last 8 years) how is the Republican economic plan working. Just wondering.


April 18th, 2011
2:43 pm

I’m the hardest working unemployed person I know. I have 3 part time jobs and have to work 7 days a week. Yes, I am employed, but not working in my chosen profession.


April 18th, 2011
3:04 pm

could it be that the 0.2% actually moved out of Georgia??? Why would anybody bring jobs here anyway this is not very welcoming to minorities and young people!


April 18th, 2011
3:04 pm

retiredds – last I checked Georgia has multinational corporations as well as farms dependent on national and global policies and economics. Part time legislators and a governor are not as influential in the economy here as you give credit to.

Billy Carter

April 18th, 2011
3:07 pm

This is great news! When Jimmy was in offce the unemployment rate was 14% so Obama has lowered it since Jimmy was in office. Way to go Barack!

Truth Squad

April 18th, 2011
3:14 pm

The end is near for Republicans. Funneling tax dollars to the well connected and the wealthy does not create a tide that lifts all boats. The Republicans have been in charge of this state for some time now, much longer than President Obama has been in office.

Now they are in the process of completing their political suicide as they push yet again to destroy Social Security, and turn Medicare into a voucher program.

It will be really interesting to see what would happen if sons and daughters had to go back to the days of paying for their parents, and grandparents medical bills and living expenses. Big test of family values, I believe it would be.

Fortunately, President Obama wants to be reelected and knows that you don’t mess with Social Security and Medicare because the people who enjoy these programs, they vote!

The truth is that Americans do indeed want Big Government! It’s just that we have too many people that don’t want to pay for it. This country isn’t broke, but we do like to pretend we are because we are afraid to admit that we do want Big Government. From taking care of the poor folks, to having the police and court system in our bedrooms and private lives, we all want Big Government in one form or another.

So now we realize that we cannot have these things and millions of jobless people too. It is only a matter of time before Americans put a halt to the idea that American workers are not a priority. It is only a matter of time before the Working and Middle Class demands to have work, be compensated fairly for their production, and be taxed fairly. 30 years the top 1% has bought politicians that funneled the fruits of increased American productivity to the top, while shifting the tax burden on the same workers.

Now we want to applaud 10% unemployment? Yes, add it all up and it’s just about closing time for Republicans and their Republican-lite Democrat buddies.


April 18th, 2011
3:36 pm

I still think it funny that ignorant liberals are still blaming this on Republicans. Simple mathematics show that people from blue states (that is liberal states for the learning impaired) have been flocking to Georgia and other red states dominated by conservatives. I find it odd so many people have fled the “workers’ paradise” states run by Democrats for the ones run by Republicans. Note the latest Census numbers for proof. Perhaps the high unemployment is a result of so many in the labor force coming here for better working and living conditions compared to the Detroit area as an example.

Keep in mind that the Congress turned Democrat in 2007. We’ve had four years of complete Congressional control – including the purse strings – in DC. This means tax cuts, budgets passed by Pelosi controlled House, etc. for four years. Even before that with a GOP controlled Congress, many of the Democrats voted for the exact same “evil Bush” policies. So to come on here blaming Bush, the GOP, Sonny Perdue as the parties responsible show that these posters have no concept of reality, fact, etc. In fact the recycled talking points for years now have failed to do anything but show the Left as lock-step ignorant to come up with anything besides “blame the GOP”. Shockingly, Obama’s plan was not supposed to let unemployment go beyond 9%. It went not only beyond that but it has remained that – perhaps much higher with a very inaccurate tallying method. The great savior and his liberal Congress have done nothing to save us. Whatever shall we do?


April 18th, 2011
3:45 pm

“Georgia is a Republican controlled state…..” Yeah, Democrats who changed parties are still Democrats are heart.


April 18th, 2011
4:37 pm

There is a reason why all southern states are piss poor and have bad economics, if it is wasn’t for Atlanta, Georgia probably would be just as broke as Mississippi, South Carolina, Louisana, etc. but all these states have something in common which is their leadership and politics as they fueled by the same ideologies from from 60’s in regards to progress


April 18th, 2011
5:00 pm

The bottom line is this group of Republican Politicians do not care a flip about the American people. They only care about the ones who can pay them, their corporate brethren. This Republican group wants to get rid of Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid all the social programs for those who need and depend on these services and yet they want to end these programs as we know it. Can you imagine what would happen to this country if these programs would be done away with. If not, take a trip to some African nations or other third world countries because this is exactly what would happen to this country without these programs.
There was an article in this paper about how all the CEO’S of all these corporations are getting all this private security for their homes and where ever they go. Setting up their little Kingdoms with their own little castles and with private security, paid for by their employers. What are they afraid of? This is what happens in third world countries..the rich live behind their castle walls with their own private security afraid of the masses that have nothing. It is happening here, this is America isn’t it?
This is what the Republicans have done and are doing to this country. They are turning us into the Rich and the Poor, no middle class. It is time to tax the rich and the corporations. For years and years these two groups have not paid their fair share of the burdens that the rest of us have paid. As a matter of fact, they have not created the Jobs that this country so desperately needs even though they got tax cuts/breaks, tax loopholes that the masses don’t get. It is way past time they paid their fair share.


April 18th, 2011
9:02 pm

I’ve been unemployed for 8 months and counting. How many of the 0.2% are unemployed workers who have maxed out their benefits? These figures are compiled from the number of unemployed workers collecting benefits. I am tired of being portrayed as lazy and complacent. I am neither!

Truth Squad

April 18th, 2011
9:02 pm

Simple mathematics show that people from blue states (that is liberal states for the learning impaired) have been flocking to Georgia and other red states dominated by conservatives. I find it odd so many people have fled the “workers’ paradise” states run by Democrats for the ones run by Republicans…

“Simple mathematics huh…lol?

The reasons those folks came here was for work. The South once excelled at attracting companies because of lower cost of labor (cheap) and lower cost of living. Also, the weather is better. Now those companies have found even cheaper labor in other countries and we’re stuck applauding an unemployment rate that exceeds the national average.

Georgia’s economy has underperformed but hey, let’s blame the Democrats in D.C.! Personal responsibility is only for those who don’t have money and connections.

As for the whole blue state-red state thing, I wouldn’t go to far with that comparison. The fact is that the blue states pay out more in taxes than they get in return. The red states need the blue states! With the exception of Texas, every red state depends more on Big Government even if you factor out social programs. That is what low wage, low education, and now high unemployment is all about.

The fact is that Georgia needs to get back to effective leadership. We are a purple sate, not red, not blue. We use to have pull in D.C. and now our folks are pretty much ignored at a time when we need them to do good work for everyone in the state not just one group or the other.

And yes, if you are going to blame Obama for D.C.,ok; then Republicans get the blame for Georgia because they are in charge, at least for a short while longer. All this anger and bitterness and liberal-blaming only can go so far.Republicans have failed. Change is here, bigger change is coming, y’all know it, and you’re just trying to take us all down cause you are scared that will not be able to dictate any longer. Let’s all agree to play nice when it comes to the economy and growing Atlanta and the state like we use to do.

job now

April 18th, 2011
11:24 pm

Only 1 out of every 10 is out of work? does that mean the recession is over like the DC economists said last year? If so, should I upgrade my beach house?

Paul Horford

April 19th, 2011
12:39 am

Engaging and well written article! This tops anything I have read lately on the subject at hand. I wonder if this’ll be posted on Twenty-First Tycoon. Although the site has awesome political, business, technology and real estate news, they could use more stuff like this.


April 19th, 2011
5:10 am

Folks, the article clearly states the number of jobs increased, so stop fixating on the unemployment rates accuracy. The Labor Department openly reports the number that have become discouraged and stopped looking for work. Nothing to write home about, but at least an improvement.