Tennessee Unemployment Drops Ahead of Holiday Season

November unemployment decreases slightly and remains near historic low
Thursday, December 20, 2018 | 01:42pm

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Burns Phillips today released unemployment statistics that show the seasonally adjusted statewide jobless rate dropped by 0.1 of a percentage point in November 2018 to 3.6 percent.

Tennessee employers added 3,400 nonfarm jobs between October and November.  The largest increases occurred in the retail trade, transportation/warehousing/utilities, and the accommodation/food services sectors.

“Job creation is critical in maintaining a strong economy across the state,” said Haslam. “For more than a year and a half, we’ve experienced historically low unemployment, while Tennessee businesses added tens of thousands of new employees to their payrolls.”

During the last 12 months, Tennessee’s workforce has grown by 60,700 nonfarm jobs. The state’s leisure/hospitality sector, along with its trade/transportation/utilities and professional/business services sectors experienced the most growth.

Across the nation, unemployment continues to remain low. For the third consecutive month, the seasonally adjusted national unemployment rate held steady in November at 3.7 percent.

When comparing 2017 to 2018, Tennessee's November unemployment rate increased from 3.3 percent to 3.6 percent, while the national rate declined from 4.1 percent to 3.7 percent.

“Even though Tennessee’s unemployment rate is slightly higher than it was this time last year, 3.3 percent was the state’s all-time lowest jobless rate,” Phillips said. “We’ve hovered around that historic low rate for many months and that proves Tennessee currently has a very healthy economy.”

The statewide and national unemployment rates are seasonally adjusted to eliminate the influences of weather, holidays, the opening and closing of schools, and other recurring seasonal events from an economic time series.

Tennesseans looking for work can find the latest job openings, receive assistance updating their resumes, and sharpen their job interview skills by visiting the state’s workforce development website.

A complete analysis of Tennessee’s unemployment data for November 2018 can be found here.

The state of Tennessee will release county unemployment data for November 2018 Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018, at 1:30 p.m. CT.