Even as state adds jobs, Alabama unemployment rate rises to 6.4 percent

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The unemployment rate in Alabama has ticked up slightly, even as the state added 6,500 jobs in January.

The Alabama Department of Labor said Monday the January rate increased by one percentage point, to 6.4 percent. The department noted that despite the increase, the state still has more people working than it has in eight years.

“Our unemployment rate rose because nearly 10,000 more people entered the labor force last month, and about 6,500 of them found work,” said Alabama Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington. “The others remain unemployed. When you have an increase in the labor force, and all of those people aren’t able to find work, you will see up an uptick in the rate.”
Washington continued, “However, there is good news in this month’s economic report. We continue to surpass our employment numbers each month, and once again, I can say that we currently have more people working in Alabama than there have been in more than eight years. Our labor force is larger than it has been in more than five years.”

January 2017 unemployment rates by county_AlabamaMajor cities with the lowest unemployment rates are:

  • Vestavia Hills: 3.7%
  • Homewood: 3.9%
  • Hoover: 4.0%

Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are:

  • Selma: 10.2%
  • Prichard: 9.5%,
  • Bessemer: 8.9%.