ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that Metro Hinesville’s unemployment rate for February was 6 percent, up 0.2 percentage point from 5.8 percent in January. The rate in February 2015 was 6.7 percent.
The rate rose because the number of unemployed residents increased by 67, as the labor force increased by 161, the department reported.
While the rate rose, the number of jobs in Metro Hinesville, which the U.S. Census Bureau defines as Liberty and Long counties and Fort Stewart, was unchanged at 19,600 from January to February. However, over the year, the area lost 200 jobs from 19,800 in February 2015. Most of the job losses came in the service industries and the goods-producing sector, which includes manufacturing and construction.
The number of initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased by 23, or 13.4 percent, to 149 in February. Most of the decrease came in administrative and support services. However, over the year, claims were up by 22, or 17.3 percent, from 127 in February 2015.
Unemployment in Coastal Georgia also rose in February, to 5.5 percent, up 0.1 percentage point from 5.4 percent in January.
The rate in February 2015 was 6.2 percent.
The rate rose because the number of unemployed residents increased by 567, as the labor force grew 3,329.
At the same time, the number of initial claims for unemployment insurance declined in the 10-county region, which includes Liberty and Long counties, by 542, or 28.6 percent, to 1,355 in February. Most of the decrease came in manufacturing, accommodations and food services, administrative and support services, and trade, transportation and warehousing. Also, over the year, claims were down by 55, or 3.9 percent, from 1,410 in February 2015.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for January was 5.4 percent, unchanged from January. It was 6.2 percent in February 2015.