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Miss. Sees Decrease in Unemployment

By Lawayne Childrey | Published 25 Jul 2013 05:19am | comments
New labor statistics show Mississippi has added nearly 6,000 jobs to the states economy over the past two months.  Between the months of May and June officials with the Mississippi Department of Employment Securities say the state saw more than 5,400 more jobs filled by various industries.
State economist Darrin Webb says most of the gain came in the leisure and hospitality industry.
"About 3,000 of those jobs, we also saw gains in manufacturing, we saw gains in retail trade, we saw some declines in a few industries particularly education and health services declined, but on average we have not been seeing the kind of growth that we have seen over the past several months since before the recession," Webb explanins.
Over the past year the Mississippi has seen an increase of about 30 thousand jobs. Webb says that's a significant sign that the state is making an economic comeback.  
"If you look at what's going on nationally, most other states started picking up employment in 2011, Mississippi was late to the party, we started seeing growth in 2012, so it's encouraging that the job growth has continued.  I don't know that im giddy over it because again, there are questions as to why it's increasing and where it's increasing and what may be explaining that," Webb continues.
However, the unemployment rate for not adjusting seasonally went up from 9.3 percent in May to 9.7 percent in June. This rate does not take into account weather, holidays or when school is in session. Mary Willoughby is Chief of Labor Market Information with the Mississippi Department of Employment Security.   
"It's nothing to be alarmed about, it's typical for this time of year because we're talking about not seasonally adjusted data.  So what that is, is the seasonal pattern is in there and it typically goes up for May to June, looking back at a spreadsheet that I have that goes back to 1980 and looking from May to June, the unemployment rate has gone up every year," says Willoughby. 
Currently, Rankin County has the states lowest unemployment rate at 5.5 percent. In contrast Clay County has the states highest unemployment rate at 20.1 percent.




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