From The Trussville Tribune Staff Reports
MONTGOMERY – The Alabama Department of Labor announced Friday that Alabama’s preliminary, seasonally adjusted November unemployment rate is up 5.9 percent, up from October’s rate of 5.7 percent and below last year’s rate of 6.2 percent.
November’s rate represents 2,065,967 employed persons, which is up from October’s count and also significantly higher than the November 2015 count of 2,011,267.
“More people are working now than at any time in 2016,” Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington said. “In fact, more people are working now than since April 2008. Additionally, there are more people in the workforce than there have been in over five years. This means that Alabamians have increased confidence in the economy. As for those counted as unemployed, November’s count ranks as one of the lowest five months since 2008.”
Washington went on to say the state is 9,800 jobs shy of reaching the two million jobs mark, which has only been achieved a handful of times over the last decade.
“While the unemployment rate is a popular economic metric for the economy and its labor market, better and more importantly measures include wage and salary employment growth and wage growth,” Sam Addy, Associate Dean for Economic Development Outreach for the University of Alabama’s Culverhouse College of Commerce and Senior Research Economist of the University’s Center for Business and Economic Research, said. “Alabama’s wage and salary growth has so far been progressing ahead of estimates, indicating employer confidence and steady hiring patterns.”
Monthly gains were seen in the trade, transportation and utilities sector, the manufacturing sector and the professional and business services sector.
“We also believe that seasonality played a factor in this month’s increase in the unemployment rate,” Washington said. “All but two counties experienced a drop in their unemployment rate over the month, as did 22 of our 23 major cities and all metropolitan statistical areas. County, city and metro rates are not seasonally adjusted.”