January unemployment rate hits record high

The state Department of Labor just released January unemployment figures, showing a preliminary but record-high rate of 8.6 percent.

This is the highest seasonal rate since 1976, when the U.S. Labor Department standardized unemployment rates among all states, said state Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond.

“We are officially sailing in uncharted economic waters,” he said in a press release.

The previous record high was 8.3 percent, recorded in January of 1983.

Dalton again was the hardest hit, with a 7.6 percent loss of jobs over January 2008. Macon and Athens did the best, but barely held even. Below is a city-by-city summary put out by the state labor department. To download a copy, click here.

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