Georgia unemployment flat for ninth straight month thanks to education and health services

Georgia’s unemployment rate held steady at 3.1% last month for the ninth consecutive month, three-tenths of a point below the national jobless rate of 3.4%, state Commissioner of Labor Bruce Thompson reported Thursday.

Georgia’s labor force increased for the seventh straight month to nearly 5.3 million, an all-time high. The number of employed grew to just more than 5.1 million, also a record.

Jobs were up a slight 0.2% in April from March but have risen 2.3% compared to April of last year to almost 4.9 million, another all-time high.

“The state’s economy continues to soar with low unemployment and job growth in virtually every sector,” Thompson said.

Job numbers in the private education and health services sector grew to 655,900, followed by an increase of 518,400 in the leisure and hospitality sector.

Initial unemployment claims last month were up by 15% over March to 25,407. Over the year, initial jobless claims rose by 46%.

More than 154,000 job listings were posted online last month for Georgians to access. The top industries for openings included health care with 32,300 openings, retail trade with 18,400, and accommodation and food services with 13,300 openings.