ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that Metro Savannah’s unemployment rate for October was 5.4 percent, unchanged from September. The rate in October 2014 was 6.6 percent.
While the rate was unchanged from September to October, employers in Metro Savannah, which the U.S. Census Bureau defines as Bryan, Chatham and Effingham counties, created more jobs and laid off fewer workers, as measured by initial claims for unemployment insurance. The number of jobs increased by 900, or 0.5 percent, in October to 172,700. The job gains came mostly in state and local government, education and health services, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, along with manufacturing.
Over the year, Savannah gained 3,800 jobs, a growth rate of 2.3 percent, from 168,900 in October 2014. Most of the job growth came in professional and business services, trade, transportation and warehousing, manufacturing, local government, education and health services, and leisure and hospitality.
Also, the number of initial claims for unemployment insurance declined by 68, or 7.9 percent, to 792 in October. Most of the decrease came in trade, transportation, warehousing, and administrative and support services. Over the year, claims were down by 141, or 15.1 percent, from 933 in October 2014.
In the Coastal Georgia region, a 10-county area that includes Bryan County, the October unemployment rate was 5.6 percent, down 0.1 percentage point from 5.7 percent in September. The rate in October 2014 was 6.8 percent.
The region’s rate declined as the number of employed residents increased by 1,153 to 292,459 from 291,306 in September. Also, the number of initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased by 171, or 11 percent, to 1,385 in October. Most of the decrease came in manufacturing, retail trade, transportation and warehousing. Over the year, claims were down by 192, or 12.2 percent, from 1,577 in October 2014.
Metro Gainesville had the lowest area jobless rate at 4.7 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 7.3 percent.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for October was 5.7 percent, down from 5.8 percent in September. It was 6.8 percent in October 2014.