Georgia’s Unemployment Claims Falls Again in May

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Friday, June 21st, 2019

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said that Georgia added jobs in May while its unemployment rate held steady.

Butler also noted that preliminary numbers showed year-over-year gains in: jobs employment, and workforce.

At the same time, claims for unemployment insurance were down when compared to last May and from the total in April.

“The long-term trends continue to go in the right directions,” Butler said.  “We continue to grow jobs and keep our unemployment rate low. Georgia remains a great place to locate and grow a business.”

Nationally, the unemployment rate also held constant, staying at 3.6 percent in May. Georgia’s rate maintained at 3.8 percent.  A year ago, Georgia’s unemployment rate sat at 4 percent.

Meanwhile, Georgia’s added 2,600 jobs in May, pushing the total to 4.59 million jobs. That number is up more than 69,000 from the same time last year. 

"We are continuing to see Georgia grow jobs and overall we're still seeing fewer layoffs year over year." Butler said. "It just goes to show the strength of Georgia's economy."

Georgia had four job sectors that added more than 10,000 jobs over the past year:

Education/health services, 17,700

Professional/business services, 16,400

Leisure/hospitality, 13,400

Construction, 11,100.

In terms of monthly numbers, government, construction and education/health services all added 1,000 or more jobs.

In May, labor force and employed residents both declined but much less than .1 percent.

Georgia’s labor force slipped by less than 5,000 versus a total work force of more than 5.1 million. And, even with the monthly loss, the labor force total was still higher than the same month a year ago.

The change in employed residents was even smaller.

That number slipped by less than 3,300 against a total number of more than 4.91 million employed residents in the state. Again, even with the monthly loss, the annual number was still up by nearly 12,000. 

At the same time, new claims for unemployment were down by about 2 percent compared with last month.  When compared to May of 2018, claims were down by about 8 percent.