State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler announced today that the preliminary unemployment rate in metro Atlanta declined to 8.5 percent in April to its lowest level since December 2008 when it was 7.7 percent. The rate was 8.7 percent in March and 9.3 percent in April 2011.
The rate decreased as the number of new jobs grew by 14,800 to 2,331,100, the highest number of jobs in metro Atlanta since 2,332,600 in November 2011.
Metro Athens had the lowest area rate at 6.5 percent, while metro Dalton had the highest at 11.4 percent.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined for the ninth consecutive month in April to 8.9 percent, the first time in more than three years the rate has dropped below nine percent. The rate fell one-tenth of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in March. The jobless rate was 9.8 percent in April a year ago.
Statewide, the rate declined as the number of new jobs grew by 31,900, to 3,926,000, the highest number of jobs in Georgia since January of 2009. Job growth is up eight-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,894,100 in March. In April a year ago, there were 3,904,400 jobs.
The industries showing growth were: trade and transportation, 9,200; leisure and hospitality, 9,200; professional and business services, 5,900; construction, 3,400; and education and healthcare, 2,700. While the state gained jobs overall, state and local governments shed 3,300 jobs.