The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the unemployment rate for Tift County rose from 9.3 percent in November 2012 to 9.6 percent in December 2012. The rate was 10.5 percent in December 2011.
The preliminary unemployment rate in the Southern Georgia region, which includes Tift County, rose to 10 percent in December, up three-tenths of a percentage point from 9.7 percent in November. The rate was 10.3 percent in December 2011.
The rate rose because the number of unemployed people increased to 17,453, up by 449 from 17,004 in November. At the same time, the labor force declined by 1,310, as some people left the job market. Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 6.6 percent, while the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 11.4 percent.
The following list shows the unemployment rates for other counties in the Tiftarea and how they compare from November to December:
• Ben Hill - 12.2 percent in November to 13.2 percent in December (13.1 percent in December 2011)
• Berrien - 10.3 percent in November to 9.8 percent in December (10.7 percent in December 2011)
• Cook - 10.9 percent in November to 10.7 percent in December (11.8 percent in December 2011)
• Irwin - 12.3 percent in November to 12.5 percent in December (13.2 percent in December 2011)
• Turner - 8.8 percent in November to 9.7 percent in December (10 percent in December 2011)
Worth is not included in the Southern Georgia region, but is in the Southwest Georgia region. The unemployment rate for Worth rose from 8.7 percent in November to 9.3 percent in December. The rate was 9.1 percent in December 2011.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased to 8.6 percent in December, up one-tenth of a percentage point from 8.5 percent in November. The rate was 9.4 percent in December a year ago.
Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at www.dol.state.ga.us.