Newton County hits lowest unemployment rate on record

Newton County’s unemployment rate fell to its lowest level on record in November.

The county’s rate of 2.4 percent was lower than the previous low of 2.5 percent recorded at the end of 1998, according to information from the Georgia Department of Labor.

In addition, 415 more Newton County residents found work in November compared to the previous month, while 250 more residents joined the county’s workforce – including anyone who works or makes themselves available for work, reported the labor department.

“We have fully recovered from this pandemic as far as employed Georgians are concerned,” said Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. “Hard work is always ahead of us as job creation overtakes new workers in the workforce. “

Newton County’s unemployment rate in November 2021 was down 0.3% from October’s 2.7% rate and almost two-thirds lower than the 6.1% recorded in November 2020.

The first claims for unemployment benefits from Newton residents also fell 26%, from 244 in October to 180 in November.

County residents who were employed totaled 52,054 in November, up from 51,639 the previous month; and 1,273 residents were unemployed compared to 1,438 in October.

A total of 53,327 Newton County residents aged 16 and over were in the labor force, up from 53,077 in October.

The previous lowest unemployment rates in Newton County were 2.5% in December 1998 and 2.6% in November 2000. It was also 2.7% on four occasions between 1998 and 2000, according to the labor department records.

Newton County’s unemployment rate was lower than the statewide rate of 2.8%.

However, it was higher than the Metro Atlanta rate of 2.2% in 29 counties. Neighboring counties of Butts, Henry, Jasper, Morgan and Walton had lower unemployment rates in November than Newton, while Rockdale was slightly higher at 2.5%.

The statewide unemployment rate was also another record high last month, and the state’s record labor force is larger than it was before the coronavirus pandemic, a reported the Capitol Beat News Service.

The unemployment rate of 2.8% was well below the national unemployment rate of 4.2%, the Georgia Department of Labor reported. At the same time, more than 5 million Georgians were employed.

Jobs in Georgia increased 13,500 on the month and 4.4% on the year to over 4.6 million. Over the past six months, the number of jobs has increased by 130,600.

Butler said: “We have recovered almost all of the jobs that we lost during the pandemic. However, the number of job seekers is still lower than the pre-pandemic figures, ”he said.

“Creating more jobs becomes very difficult if we cannot fill the vacancies in the 300,000 jobs currently open. That’s a good problem to have and it shows how solid Georgia’s recovery has been, especially compared to other states our size.

The employment sectors with the most job gains during the month included transportation and warehousing, which gained 4,300 jobs; manufacturing of non-durable goods, which increased by 2,300 jobs; and accommodation and food services, which gained 2,200 jobs in November after being decimated during the pandemic.

First statewide jobless claims fell last month from 10,116 to 17,194, a drop of 37% and the first time since November 2019 that early claims have fallen below the 20,000 plateau.

Over 190,000 job vacancies were posted on, the website of the Department of Labor.

The lowest county unemployment rates in the state were found in Jackson and Oconee counties at 1.4% each. The highest rate was in Clay County in southwest Georgia at 6.4%.

Capitol Beat News Service contributed to the report.

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