Archived Story

Unemployment drops in November

Published 11:24am Friday, December 17, 2010

While the state’s unemployment rate increased by a tenth of a percent in November from October’s rate of 8.9 percent, Tallapoosa County’s rate actually saw a decrease, according to numbers released by the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations.

The county’s rate dropped from 12.1 percent in October to 11.7 percent in November.

Lake Martin Area Economic Development Alliance Executive Director Don McClellan said ongoing success of auto parts suppliers SL Alabama in Alexander City, KwangSung America and Sejin America in Dadeville could have a lot to do with the decrease.

“It’s going in the right direction,” McClellan said of the unemployment rate. “That’s good news for us.”

The current number is also much better than the 14 percent unemployment experienced in November of 2009, which McClellan said is positive for the area.

“It’s brighter than it was,” McClellan said. “Hopefully we’ve weathered the worst of the storm.”

The numbers released Friday are not all positive for the area though. The county has seen a decrease in the civilian labor force from October and also a decrease in employment from the same month. The workforce decreased to 17,313 from October’s number of 17,484. Employment declined from 15,363 in October to 15,279 in November.

Department of Industrial Relations spokeswoman Tara Hutchison said the decrease in the civilian work force could indicate job growth in some areas, but could also more negative.

“It could be that some have gotten jobs or it could be they’ve become discouraged and stopped looking,” Hutchison said.

Overall the state is below the national average unemployment rate of 9.8 percent and the slight increase to 9 percent represents roughly 200,000 workers, Hutchison said.

“We always expect fluctuations during a time of economic recovery,” she said.

November’s rate was less than the rate of 10.9 percent represented this time last year and the improvement is due in large part to manufacturing, Hutchison said.

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