NASHVILLE - Tennessee’s unemployment rate for the month of December is 4.7 percent, down from the seasonally adjusted November rate of 5.0 percent, Commissioner of Labor & Workforce Development James Neeley announced today. In 2005, Tennessee’s unemployment rate for the month of December was 5.4 percent. The national unemployment rate for December is 4.5 percent, the same as the November rate.
“December’s unemployment rate of 4.7 percent brings us to the close of 2006 with a .7 percent decrease from a year ago,” said Commissioner Neeley. “This shows us that through the year Tennessee has been experiencing steady job growth. December is one of three months at the end of 2006 showing an unemployment rate below five percent. This is significant because we haven’t seen the rates below five percent since September of 2001.”
The November-to-December business survey shows employment increases in trade, transportation and utilities, up 7,800 jobs. Employment in local government also increased by 2,000 and professional, scientific, and technical services employment increased 1,400 jobs. Seasonal month-to-month employment decreases took place in manufacturing with 2,000 jobs lost. Leisure and hospitality employment lost 1,200 jobs and state government educational services decreased by 1,000 jobs.
From December 2005 to December 2006, trade/transportation/utilities jobs increased by 10,000. Jobs in leisure and hospitality rose by 8,800 and educational and health services jobs increased by 6,500. Employment decreased in manufacturing by 9,000, food and beverage stores by 1,500 and administrative/support/waste services jobs by 1,200.