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Area unemployment slightly up

GREATER VALLEY AREA — Unemployment numbers for Chambers and Troup counties show that while the area has a slightly higher unemployment number for November compared to October, they remain much lower than the same time last year.

According to the Alabama Department of Labor, Chambers’ civilian labor force shrunk slightly during the month, reaching 15,435 from October’s 15,493. Employment also shrank by 63 to 14,902 and unemployment rose to 533 from 528.

A year ago, Chambers County had an unemployment rate of 5.1 percent whereas now it is at 3.5 percent. Only 18 of Alabama’s 67 counties had a lower unemployment rate in November. Four other counties tied with Chambers.

Nearby counties ran the gamut, from Tallapoosa at 3.5, to Randolph at 3.6 to Lee at 3.1 percent.

Over in Troup County, the Georgia Department of Labor shows the labor force grew by 51, reaching 37,111 from October’s 37,060. Employment also grew by 13 to 35,574 and unemployment rose to 1,537 from 1,499.

Last year, Troup County had an unemployment rate of 4.7 percent as opposed to the current rate of 4.1 percent. Troup ranks among 43 percent of all counties with a percentage rate between 4 and 4.9 percent. Sixteen percent of all counties ranked below 4 percent and 42 percent of counties ranked higher.

Statewide, Alabama has a smaller labor force in November, with 2,173,604, compared to October, 2,178,339, and a much smaller amount compared to last year, 2,184,641.

Employment is also lower compared to last month, dropping down to 2,096,334 from October’s 2,102,573. November was higher compared to last year’s 2,060,807.

Unemployment for the state was higher by 1,504 compared to last month but was significantly lower, by 46,564 people, than last year. Alabama’s unemployment rate is .3 percent lower than the national average.

In Georgia, the labor force grew by 8, 284 people in November and by 119,462 people from last year. The number of employed rose by 6,385 people in November and by 170,267 compared to last year.

Unemployment rose from 221,447 in November from 219,548 in October but shrank from the 272,252 people last year. Georgia has an unemployment rate .4 percent higher compared to the national average.