Paulding County’s unemployment rate dropped to 8.5 percent in February from 8.6 percent in January and 9.8 percent in February 2011, according to preliminary figures released today by the Georgia Department of Labor.
The county gained almost 330 employed residents and cut the number of unemployed people by nearly 70 while the labor force grew by about 260 people from January to 72,910. In a year, Paulding gained more than 1,700 jobs while the number of unemployed residents fell by almost 900.
The February rate for Paulding still was higher than the national rate of 8.3 percent, unchanged from January, but was below the state rate of 9.1 percent, down from 9.2 percent in January.
For the 15-county area covered by the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission, including Paulding, the February rate was 9.6 percent, compared with 9.8 percent in January and 10.5 percent in February 2011.
For the 28-county Atlanta metro area, which also includes Paulding, the unemployment rate dropped to 9 percent from 9.1 percent in January and 9.9 percent in February 2011.
Fewer layoffs in manufacturing, construction, trade, and administrative and support services fueled the drop in the Atlanta metro unemployment rate, the state Labor Department said.
While the national and statewide figures are seasonally adjusted, the local numbers are not, so the comparisons with a year ago are a better gauge of the employment picture than the month-to-month variations.
The state gained 15,600 jobs in February, 70 percent of them in the private sector, for a total of 3,880,400, the Labor Department said.
In the past year, Georgia added 41,800 jobs, most of them in professional and business services, the state department said. Other top areas for job growth were retail trade, education and health care, and manufacturing.
February's Unemployment Report
|Jurisdiction||Preliminary Feb. 2012||Revised Jan. 2012||Revised Feb. 2011|
|Atlanta Regional Commission||9.0%||9.1%||9.9%|
|Note: U.S. and Georgia rates are seasonally adjusted; all regional, county and city rates are not.|