4:38 am August 16, 2012, by Henry Unger
Georgia’s unemployment rate jumped to 9.3 percent in July from 9 percent in June, the state labor department said Thursday.
The state’s jobless rate, which had been closing the gap with the national rate, is now back at a full percentage point above the U.S. rate of 8.3 percent.
Georgia’s rate has declined from a year ago when it was 10 percent.
“One of the main reasons for the increase in the unemployment rate was a large number of temporary layoffs in manufacturing,” state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement. “But many of those people have already gone back to work.”
There were 56,540 first-time claims for unemployment insurance benefits in July — up 15.7 percent from June. Temporary manufacturing layoffs accounted for most of the increase, the labor department said.
The state’s labor force increased by 7,731 new jobseekers to 4,765,132 in July. But the number of jobs dropped by 0.5 percent in July. There were 20,600 jobs lost among seasonal workers in the local public schools. The private sector added 5,600 jobs.
The number of jobs in July totaled 50,600 more than a year ago, with nearly 32,000 of those gains coming in metro Atlanta. Statewide, the annual growth was in professional and business services, 29,300; trade, transportation, and warehousing, 18,400; education and health care, 8,000; manufacturing, 3,600; and leisure and hospitality, 2,100.
The number of long-term unemployed workers — those jobless for at least 27 weeks — dropped by 4,700 to total 225,400 in July. But the long-term unemployed still make up 51 percent of all the state’s jobless workers.
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