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January Unemployment Rate 8.2 Percent

Thursday, March 01, 2012 | 07:15am
First Drop Below National Rate Since November 2010
NASHVILLE – Tennessee Commissioner of Labor & Workforce Development Karla Davis announced today Tennessee’s unemployment rate for January fell to 8.2 percent, down from the December revised rate of 8.5. The national unemployment rate for January 2012 was 8.3 percent, a decrease of 0.2 percentage point from the December rate.
“This month the numbers show an increase of 12,700 jobs* so we are seeing positive growth in private industry,” Commissioner Davis said. “The net gains are chipping away at the dramatic loss of jobs during the recession.”
•           Tennessee’s unemployment rate is below the U.S. rate for the first time since November 2010
•           The number of unemployed persons (257,500) is the lowest since November 2008.
•           The number of employed persons (2,877,300) is the highest since March 2008.
UT Economist Bill Fox says the short-term industry reports are unusual when compared with yearly information. “Year-over-year the amount of goods production, specifically construction and durable goods manufacturing, was very strong. This short-term outpacing of goods manufacturing as compared with jobs created in service industries is unlike what we’ve seen for a while.”
Major Changes in Estimated Nonagricultural Employment
(Seasonally Adjusted)
December 2011 to January 2012
From December to January, Professional and Business Services was up by 3,900 jobs; and Finance and Insurance increased by 2,800 jobs. Total Government decreased by 2,100 jobs; Educational Services was down 1,500 jobs; and Wholesale Trade declined by 1,000 jobs.
Major Changes in Estimated Nonagricultural Employment
(Seasonally Adjusted)
January 2011 to January 2012
Year-over-year increases took place in Professional and Business Services, up 18,500 jobs; Mining, Logging and Construction increased by 12,500 jobs; and Health Care and Social Assistance increased by 9,900 jobs. Employment decreases took place in Non-Durable Goods, which were down by 2,800 jobs; Wholesale Trade was down 2,300 jobs; and Educational Services declined by 2,200 jobs.
*Based on Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment
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