Recent unemployment figures from the Georgia Department of Labor deliver mixed news for Stephens County.
According to the figures for the month of may released Wednesday, Stephens County’s preliminary unemployment rate for the month of may jumped to 8.2 percent.
That is a six-tenths of a percentage point increase from the revised April unemployment rate of 7.6 percent.
However, while the number of unemployed rose from April to May in Stephens County, so did the number of employed as the county’s total labor force grew in may.
The May labor force grew by just under 150 to just over 13,300, while the number of employed in the county increased by 60 to more than 12,200.
Meanwhile, this May’s preliminary unemployment rate is seven-tenths of a percentage point lower than the revised May 2012 rate of 8.9 percent.
Also, the total labor force this May is larger than last May, while more people were employed and fewer people were unemployed this May than in May 2012.
Franklin, Habersham, and Banks counties all saw similar trends.
In Franklin County, the preliminary unemployment rate rose six-tenths of a percentage point in May to 10 percent. Habersham County’s preliminary unemployment rate rose eight-tenths of a percentage point in May to 8.5 percent. Banks County’s preliminary unemployment rate went up six-tenths of a percentage point in May to 6.1 percent.
State Labor Department officials said unemployment rate increases last month are due in large part to a seasonal influx of jobseekers entering the labor force as new graduates begin looking for work.