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County’s Jobless Rate Drops

By Jack Gurner

WATER VALLEY – Unemployment dropped a little more than a point over the month of July going from 10 percent in June to 8.9 percent in July.
The most recent figures from the Mississippi Department of Employment Security show that 5,160 people were employed in July with 510 out of work as compared to 580 in June.
The labor force also went down, going from 5,730 in June to 5,670 in July. The labor force is defined by MDES as the estimated number of people eligible for work or actively looking for work.
Just four years ago in July 2009, the unemployment rate was 16.5 percent. And, just one year before that in July 2008, the rate was 7 points less at 9.5 percent. The current rate is less than in July for the past five years.
In comparison to the five surrounding counties, the Yalobusha unemployment rate was less than Panola (10.8), Tallahatchie (11.0) and Calhoun (9.8); but more than Grenada (8.7) and Lafayette (7.1).
Initial unemployment insurance claims remained about the same in July, going from 52 in June to 53 in July. Continuing claims were higher, going from 489 in June to 545 in July.
The July 2013 initial claims (53) are lower than the initial claims in July 2012 (64). But, the July 2013 continuing claims (545) are considerably less than in June 2012 (707).
Mississippi’s unadjusted unemployment rate for July was 8.6 percent, decreasing 1.2 percentage points from the previous month’s rate of 9.8 percent.
When compared to the July 2012 rate of 10.3 percent, the rate decreased 1.7 percentage points. The number of unemployed decreased 16,600 over the month, while the employed total increased 7,200 from the prior month.
The Nation’s unadjusted unemployment rate for July at 7.7 percent was down one tenth of a percentage point over the month, and was nine-tenths of a percentage point below the year ago rate of 8.6 percent.
For the month of July, only twenty-seven counties in Mississippi posted unemployment rates less than or equal to the state’s rate of 8.6 percent. Rankin County posted the lowest unemployment rate for the month of July at 4.6 percent.
Six counties reported rates greater than or equal to 15.0 percent. Clay County had the highest unemployment rate for July at 19.0 percent.

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