County and state jobless rates rise in May

Published 4:00 pm Friday, June 15, 2012

Chilton County’s jobless rate increased in May to 6.6 percent. That’s up from April’s rate of 5.8 percent.

The county’s rate is lower than the statewide average of 7.4 percent, which was also up from 7.2 percent the previous month.

Statewide, May’s numbers represent 159,218 unemployed individuals, compared to 152,012 in April.

“While it’s certainly never a good thing to report an increase in the unemployment rate, I have to say this one was expected,” said Tom Surtees, director of the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations. “We traditionally see an increase in the May and June rates as more people enter the workforce in the form of new graduates and education staff who aren’t working during the summer months. In addition, the national unemployment rate rose slightly, and the states usually follow the nation’s lead.”

The national unemployment rate for May was 8.2 percent, up from 8.1 in April.

The counties with the lowest unemployment rate were: Shelby County at 5.2 percent, Coffee County at 6.3 percent, Limestone County at 6.4 percent and Autauga County at 6.4 percent.

Counties with the highest unemployment rates were: Wilcox County at 16.2 percent, Lowndes County at 15 percent and Dallas County at 13.3 percent.