Shelby County, Hoover unemployment rates remain low

Published 3:12 pm Thursday, August 25, 2016

From Staff Reports

Shelby County and Hoover are once again among the counties and cities with the lowest unemployment rates in Alabama.

Hoover’s unemployment rate for July was 4 percent, behind only Vestavia Hills (3.4 percent) and Homewood (3.9 percent) among major cities.

Shelby County’s preliminary unemployment rate for July was 4.2 percent, down from the revised June rate of 4.8 percent and the July 2015 rate of 4.6 percent.

The July 2016 rate represents 104,244 employed residents in Shelby County and 4,555 unemployed residents.

Shelby County’s unemployment rate was the lowest in the state, followed by Elmore County at 4.7 percent and Baldwin County at 4.8 percent.

Counties with the highest unemployment rates are Wilcox County at 14.3 percent, Perry County at 12.1 percent and Clarke County at 11.4 percent.

Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are: Selma at 11.4 percent, Prichard at 10.2 percent and Bessemer at 9 percent.

Unemployment rates for counties surrounding Shelby include Jefferson at 5.6 percent, St. Clair at 4.9, Talladega at 6.4, Coosa at 5.8, Chilton at 5.3 and Bibb at 6.4.

Gov. Robert Bentley announced that Alabama’s preliminary, seasonally adjusted July unemployment rate is 5.7 percent, down from June’s rate of 6 percent, and below July 2015’s rate of 6.1 percent.

July’s state rate represents 123,095 unemployed persons, compared to 130,298 in June and 130,098 in July 2015.

“We continue to see decreases in Alabama’s unemployment rate, and increases in both of our employment measures over the year, which is a testament to the strong economic development efforts we have prioritized,” Bentley said in a press release. “We haven’t seen an unemployment rate this low in eight years. Not only did the rate decrease since last month, there are also nearly 28,000 more people working this year than there were last year.”

In July, 2,039,029 people were counted as employed, up from 2,011,438 in July 2015. Additionally, 123,095 people were counted as unemployed in July 2016. The last time that number was at or below 123,095 was in June 2008, when the number of unemployed measured 118,828.

Over the year, wage and salary employment increased 10,000, with gains in the leisure and hospitality sector (3,300), the trade, transportation, and utilities sector (3,200), the financial activities sector (3,100), and the manufacturing sector (3,000), among others.

“July registered the fewest number of unemployed people since 2008 and the good news also trickled down to the counties this month as well,” Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington said. “Every county in Alabama saw its rate decrease over the month, and 66 of 67 counties saw their rates decrease over the year, some by more than two percentage points. This is excellent news!”