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Metro Albany jobless rate dips to 7.6

Creation of jobs, decrease in unemployed residents contribute to dip in unemployment

ALBANY — The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that metro Albany’s unemployment rate decreased to 7.6 percent in April, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 7.9 percent in March.

The rate was 8.7 percent in April a year ago. The rate declined because metro Albany employers created 200 more jobs over the month and year. The number of jobs increased to 60,900 in April, up from 60,700 in both March and April 2013. Most of the job gains came in trade, transportation and warehousing, labor officials said.

The Labor Department also announced that the unemployment rate in the Southwest Georgia region decreased to 7.5 percent in April, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 7.8 percent in March. The rate was 8.3 percent in April a year ago.

The rate declined in Southwest Georgia because the number of unemployed residents decreased to 11,655, down by 535 from 12,196 in March. There were 13,064 unemployed residents in April 2013, Labor Department officials said.

Officials said there were 2,928 new Southwest Georgia claims for unemployment insurance filed in April, an increase of 1,797, or 158.9 percent, from 1,131 in March. Most of the increase in claims came in poultry processing. There were 2,076 claims filed in April 2013.

In Albany, there were 1,343 new claims for unemployment insurance filed in April, an increase of 752, or 127.2 percent, from 591 in March, officials said Thursday. Most of the increase in claims was due to temporary layoffs in poultry processing. There were 984 claims filed in April 2013.

Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April was 7 percent, unchanged from March. The rate was 8.3 percent in April a year ago.