4:58 am March 15, 2012, by Henry Unger
Metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent in January, from a revised 8.9 percent in December, the labor department said Thursday.
A year ago, the jobless rate was 10.3 percent.
The rate increased because there were layoffs in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, transportation, warehousing, and administrative and support services, the labor department said.
Among the core metro counties, Clayton had the highest jobless rate at 11.6 percent. Fulton was next with 9.9 percent, followed by DeKalb (9.6 percent), Cobb (8.4 percent) and Gwinnett (8 percent).
Looking into the future, a study released earlier this week predicted a brighter second quarter for the metro area. Twenty percent of the metro firms surveyed by the Manpower employment company said they expect to hire more workers in the second quarter. Only 5 percent said they expect to reduce staff.
Last week, the labor department said Georgia’s unemployment rate declined to 9.2 percent in January, the lowest rate since March 2009 when it was 9.1 percent.
At 9.2 percent, the jobless rate in the metro area and state are well above the national rate of 8.3 percent.
Statewide, the rate went down because about 13,000 more Georgians were employed in January than in December. Also, Georgia gained 83,700 jobs in the last 12 months — the largest January to January growth since 2006.
Among the sectors showing growth over the year, professional and businesses services gained 37,000 jobs, retail trade gained 15,100, health care and social assistance grew by 11,100, and manufacturing gained 7,300, the labor department said.
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