County jobless rate plummets

Published 11:33 pm Friday, November 18, 2011

Governor Robert Bentley announced Friday that Alabama’s October unemployment rate dropped by half of a percentage point to 9.3. October’s rate represents 201,296 unemployed persons, down from 211,132 last month. This is the fourth consecutive month Alabama’s unemployment rate has decreased.

Marengo County faired even better, shedding more than a percent and a half from September. The local jobless rate for October was 11.2 percent compared to 12.8 percent the month before. The rate was 12.2 percent in October 2011.

“The drop in Alabama’s unemployment rate is certainly good news for our state,” Bentley said. “While we are still a long way from reaching full employment, October’s decline shows positive momentum for our state as we continue our mission to put Alabamians back to work.”

Email newsletter signup

Alabama Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees commented that the drop in the unemployment rate is a positive sign in economic recovery.

“We are definitely excited to be able to announce a significant drop in our unemployment rate,” Surtees said. “We are continuing to notice positive signs in our economic recovery.  Our initial unemployment claims are lower than they have been over the past four years, as is the amount of our benefit payments.”

“These positive indicators, along with the fact that we added nearly 10,000 jobs this month, contributed to the large decrease,” continued Surtees. “We are certainly not out of the woods yet, but we are optimistic that we will continue to see positive hiring trends for the rest of the year, especially as seasonal hiring picks up for the holidays.”

Among the Black Belt region, only Hale (10 percent) and Choctaw (10.8) posted a jobless rate lower than Marengo.