Alabama's unemployment rate rises to 11.0%

Posted by: Sherri Burnett-James - bio | email

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Alabama's unemployment rate for December 2009 rose to 11.0 percent.

Alabama Department of Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees announced today that this is an increase from November's rate of 10.5%.

December's rate represents 225,596 unemployed persons.

Wage and salary employment declined by 9,300 with losses occurring in the following sectors: professional and business services, leisure and hospitality, construction, educational and health services, government, financial activities, and manufacturing.

Gains occurred in the following sectors: trade, transportation and utilities, other services, natural resources and mining, and information.

Surtees said,"Although we became a little hopeful due to last month's unemployment decrease, I think we all realize the reality of the economic situation in this country. We are continuing to see Alabamians suffer from the recession and remain committed to serving them."

"During 2009, we distributed benefits exceeding $1.2 billion and will continue to assist the unemployed with all of the state and federal resources at our disposal," Surtees said.

The counties with the lowest unemployment rates were: Shelby at 7.6%, Madison at 7.7%, and Coffee at 8.1%. Counties with the highest rates were: Wilcox at 24.5%, Monroe at 20.2%, and Dallas at 20.1%.

For 2009, Alabama's preliminary average unemployment rate was 9.8%. Wage and salary employment declined by 65,100. Annual losses occurred in manufacturing, construction, trade, transportation, and utilities, professional and business services, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, information, other services, and natural resources and mining. The only annual gains were recorded in education and health services and government.

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