Chilton County ranked fifth lowest in December unemployment

Published 3:17 pm Friday, January 19, 2018

The records continue to fall every month when it comes to Alabama’s decreasing unemployment rate.

According to a press release from the Governor’s Office, 5,554 people found employment in December 2017.

As a result of the new hires, Alabama’s unemployment rate remained steady at 3.5 percent, which tied the state’s record low that was set in the prior month.

Chilton County was tied for the fifth lowest unemployment rate in the state for December 2017 at 3.1 percent.

Sharing the fifth lowest unemployment rate with Chilton County included Autauga, Cherokee, Limestone, Morgan, St. Clair and Tuscaloosa Counties.

Chilton County’s unemployment rate dropped back to 3.1 percent after a slight increase had brought it up to 3.3 percent in November.

2017 proved to be a record-setting year for employment in the state.

“We are ending 2017 with great news on the employment front,” Gov. Kay Ivey said.  “Not only have we reached a record low unemployment rate, but now we can add another record to our list – more people are working in Alabama than ever before!”

Economic growth was predicted for Alabama in 2017, but as the months moved along the unemployment statistics began to shrink to the point of expecting to set a record with every month that passed.

“In early 2017, economists predicted that Alabama’s economy would gain 18,700 jobs over the year,” said Fitzgerald Washington, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Labor.  “I’m happy to say that we surpassed that prediction by more than 13,000 jobs, gaining a total of 32,500 jobs.

According to Washington, all 67 counties in Alabama showed a “significant” decrease in their unemployment rate in 2017.

“Employers are hiring in Alabama, and we stand ready to provide whatever assistance is needed to make sure that they are able to fill their open positions,” Washington said.

The lowest rate in the state belonged to Shelby County at 2.5 percent, while Wilcox County was the highest at 9.5 percent.

The U.S. unemployment rate for December 2017 was 4.1 percent.