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State sets another jobless record

Records are made to be broken and the Yellowhammer State continues to do so in the economic arena.

A record low 51,462 people are unemployed in Alabama, according to the latest figures released today by the governor’s office. That number is down from 53,017 in March and 57,712 in April 2022.

The preliminary, seasonally adjusted April unemployment rate is 2.2%, down from March’s rate of 2.3%, and below April 2022’s rate of 2.5%.

Gov. Kay Ivey touted the resiliency of the workforce in posting the lowest jobless rate in the Southeast.

“Yet again, we see the resiliency of our state’s workforce. When Alabama works, Alabama families thrive and records are broken time and time again,” she said. “We have a quick growing economy, and we are leading the game when it comes to economic success.

“Boasting the lowest unemployment rate in the Southeast, Alabama is well on its way to having the lowest unemployment rate in the nation.”

The number of people in the workforce also reached a record, increasing 3,367 over the month to 2,293,022. Additionally, the number of people counted as employed is a record high 2,241,560..

“Continuing this positive trend, Alabama’s employers added more than 40,000 jobs over the last year, reaching the third highest jobs count in history,” said Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington. “Wages have yet again set a new record high, rising by more than $30 a week since last month alone.

“More money in the pockets of Alabamians is always a good thing.”

Over the year, wage and salary employment increased 40,800 to 2,143,700, with gains in the private education and health services sector (+8,000), the government sector (+6,300) and the professional and business services sector (+6,100), among others, the governor’s office said in a news release.

Over the month, wage and salary employment increased in April by 7,900. Monthly gains were seen in the leisure and hospitality sector (+3,800), the financial activities sector (+1,700) and the private education and health services sector (+1,300), among others.

Total private average weekly wages reached a record high in April, rising to $1,023.12, up $31.02 over the month and up $27.68 over the year, the release said. Additionally, both the trade, transportation and utilities sector and the financial activities sector hit record high weekly wages, rising to $835.56 and $1,305.68 respectively.

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are: Shelby County at 1.3%, Morgan, Marshall, Madison and Cullman counties at 1.4% and St. Clair, Limestone, Lawrence, Elmore and Blount counties at 1.5%.

Counties with the highest unemployment rates are: Wilcox County at 6.0%, Greene County at 4.0% and Clarke County at 3.7%.

Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are: Alabaster, Madison, Trussville and Vestavia Hills at 1.2%, Homewood, Hoover and Northport at 1.3% and Athens at 1.4%.

Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are: Selma at 4.5%, Prichard at 3.2% and Bessemer and Gadsden at 2.5%.

(Office of Governor Kay Ivey)

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