Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Declines to 4.9 percent in August


Sept. 15, 2016
ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) announced today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.9 percent in August, down one-tenth of a percentage point from 5 percent in July. The rate in August 2015 was 5.6 percent.

“This is the first time in nine years that Georgia’s unemployment rate has been as low as the national rate,” said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “When we look back to that time, we see that our job market has made significant improvements, not only as far as the rate is concerned, but we also have more jobs and more people employed than ever before.”

In July 2007, the Georgia rate was 4.6 percent and the U.S. rate was 4.7 percent.

The state’s job total reached a record 4,387,200, as the number increased by 7,500, or 0.2 percent. Most of the gains came in trade, transportation and warehousing, 7,500; leisure and hospitality, 5,800; and local government, 3,000, as the public schools reopened for the new school year. The job gains were offset somewhat by losses in construction, 3,500; health care and social assistance, 2,200; manufacturing, 2,100; and other services, 2,000.

Georgia’s over-the-year job growth remained strong as the state gained 104,000 jobs, a 2.4 percent growth rate, up from 4,283,200 in August 2015. The national job growth rate was 1.7 percent. Most of the job gains came in trade, transportation and warehousing, 30,300; professional and business services, 25,800; leisure and hospitality, 22,900; education and health services, 12,300; construction, 9,500; manufacturing, 5,200; and financial activities, 4,400. Information services lost 5,000 jobs.

The number of employed Georgians reached an all-time high of 4,651,399, as 12,928 people were hired. At the same time, the number of unemployed residents fell by 749 to 241,737, its lowest level since October 2007. The labor force, which consists of employed people and those who are unemployed but actively looking for jobs, grew by 12,179 to 4,893,136. It has grown by 108,713 since the beginning of this year.

The number of initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased by 8,401, or 23.6 percent, to 27,238 in August. Most of the decrease came in manufacturing and administrative and support services, which includes temporary staffing agencies.  One fifth of the claims filed were due to temporary layoffs. Over the year, claims were up by 903, or 3.4 percent, from 26,335 in August 2015.

In August, 62,839 jobs throughout the state were posted on Employ Georgia, the GDOL’s online job listing services The leading sectors for job postings were health care and social assistance, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, professional, scientific and technical services, along with manufacturing.

To learn more about career opportunities, Employ Georgia and other GDOL services for job seekers and employers, and to connect with us on social media, visit


Leave a comment

Back to Top