White County’s unemployment rate increases slightly

By | November 27, 2017 6:37 am

Unemployment rates continue to remain low across the state, including White County, according to a recently released state audit report.

Nearly all Tennessee counties continued to have unemployment rates below 5.0 percent, in October 2017, following a record-breaking September, when, for the first time ever, each of the Tennessee’s 95 counties experienced a rate below 5.0 percent. October marked the fifth month that Tennessee’s statewide unemployment rate was in record territory, matching the all-time low of 3.0 percent set last month.

“To have so many counties under 5.0 percent unemployment, as we head into the holiday season, is a good thing,” said Burns Phillips, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development commissioner. “It means more Tennesseans are able to provide for their families, and that is the goal of Gov. Haslam’s workforce initiatives.”

In White County, the recorded unemployment rate for the month of October was set at 3.2 percent, which is a slight increase from September’s rate of 3.1 percent. Still, overall, the unemployment rate is down significantly from this time last year, when White County’s unemployment rate was 5.3 percent, a 2.1 percent reduction.

Within the Upper Cumberland region, Putnam County held the lowest unemployment rate at 2.9 percent, which is a 0.1 percent increase from last month. Neighboring DeKalb County has the highest unemployment rate within the region at 3.8 percent.

The lowest unemployment rate in Tennessee went to Williamson and Davidson counties, as they tied with unemployment rates at 2.2 percent. Williamson County’s rate increased by 0.1 percent, in October, while Davidson County’s rate held steady compared to the previous month.

Tennessee did see two counties increase above the 5.0 percent threshold, but their rates are still below 5.5 percent. Rhea County has the state’s highest unemployment at 5.4 percent, up from 4.9 percent in September. Lauderdale County’s rate increased to 5.3 percent, from 4.6 percent the previous month.

Looking at the entire state, October unemployment rates decreased in four counties, remained the same in seven counties, and increased in 84 counties. Ninety-three of Tennessee’s 95 counties continue to have unemployment rates below 5.0 percent.

The statewide unemployment rate is seasonally adjusted, while the county rates are not. Seasonal adjustment is a statistical technique that eliminates the influences of weather, holidays, the opening and closing of schools and other recurring seasonal events from an economic time series.

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