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New this morning: Georgia unemployment again hits 10.4 percent

Photo by Paul Murphy

Photo by Paul Murphy

Georgia's unemployment rate once again hit an all-time high of 10.4 percent in January, the state labor department reported Thursday.

The December rate, originally reported as 10.2 percent, was revised upward to 10.4 percent, the labor department said. The state's jobless rate was also 10.4 percent in January 2010.

"Georgia's job market for the past year has basically been flat," state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement. "Although the rate dipped to 10 percent temporarily last summer, for the past seven months it has trended upward.

"Georgia's job market for the past year has basically been flat," state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement. "Although the rate dipped to 10 percent temporarily last summer, for the past seven months it has trended upward.

"Other troubling signs are that in the same 12-month period, the number of jobs has shown a miniscule increase, while the number of long-term unemployed has increased significantly."

In January, there were 3,772,100 payroll jobs -- up just one-tenth of a percentage point from January 2010. There was a decrease of 1.8 percent from December. Most of the declines came among seasonal workers in construction, trade, leisure and hospitality, and administrative and support services.

There were 262,700 long-term unemployed Georgians in January -- those who have been out of work for at least 27 weeks. This represents an increase of 47.1 percent from January 2010 and a rise of 1.4 percent from December.

The long-term unemployed now account for a record high 54.2 percent of the 484,668 jobless workers in Georgia, the labor department said.

January marked the 40th consecutive month Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 9.0 percent.