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Unemployment rate drops in May

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Managing Editor

The unemployment rate for Chiton County dropped to 9% in May a decrease from 12.2% in April, based on seasonally adjusted rates.

The overall state unemployment rate dropped from 13.8% (April revised) to 9.9% (May), according to the Alabama Department of Labor.

“This month’s decrease in the unemployment rate reflects that people are returning to work following the pandemic-related shutdown,” Gov. Kay Ivey said in a press release. “While we are nowhere near pre-pandemic levels, a monthly decrease of nearly four percentage points is certainly a positive. Alabama, along with the rest of the nation, will be feeling the impacts brought on by this virus for months to come. My administration is committed to helping return Alabamians to their jobs safely, and to helping Alabama businesses to reopen and grow.”

According to ADOL, May’s percentage of unemployment “represents 221,811 unemployed persons.”

“While we are still far short of last year’s economic markers, we did show significant improvement over the last month,” said Secretary Fitzgerald Washington. “More than 80,000 fewer people were counted as unemployed last month, while the number of employed rose by more than 128,300.”

The increase in those working in May in the state rose by 42,500 in leisure and hospitality, education and health services and other services.

“Over the year, wage and salary employment decreased 161,500, with losses in the leisure and hospitality sector (-64,600), the professional and business services sector (-27,700), and the education and health services sector (-16,700), among others,” according to the press release. “Average weekly earnings increased to a record high in May, rising to $905.25 per week, representing an increase of $66.43 over the year.”