State releases January county-by-county unemployment rates

(Tennessee Department of Workforce Development press release) Statistics released Thursday by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD) show 67 of the state’s 95 counties continued to experience unemployment rates below 5 percent during the first month of 2019.
The January unemployment rate is 5 percent or greater in the remaining 28 Tennessee counties. 
Williamson County has the lowest unemployment for the month at 2.4 percent, an increase of 0.3 of a percentage point from December’s revised figure. 
With a rate of 2.6 percent, unemployment in Davidson County was the second lowest in the state last month, and that figure represents a 0.3 of a percentage point increase compared to the previous month. 
Rutherford County had the state’s third lowest rate at 2.7 percent, which is a 0.5 of a percentage point increase from its December rate. 
“Many counties did experience an uptick in unemployment in January,” said TDLWD Commissioner Jeff McCord, “But when you look at a year-to-year comparison, the vast majority of Tennessee’s counties had lower unemployment this year compared to January of last year.”

Lake and Obion counties in the Northwest corner of Tennessee had the highest unemployment in January. 
Lake County’s unemployment rate jumped 3.7 percentage points last month to 9.3 percent, the highest in the state. 
Obion County more than doubled its unemployment rate in January to 8.8 percent, a 4.7 percentage point increase from December’s revised rate of 4.1 percent. 
“The unemployment numbers in Lake and Obion counties have our attention,” McCord said. “We are meeting next week with our workforce development partners from across the state and we will have an opportunity to talk about any particular issues in the Northwest area that may have contributed to this spike in unemployment.” 
For the last four months, Tennessee’s statewide seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has remained at its record low of 3.3 percent. Nationally, the January unemployment rate experienced a slight increase of 0.1 of a percentage point to 4.0 percent. 

Locally, unemployment in Anderson County increased by six-tenths of a percentage point in January, going from 3.2% in December to 3.8 in the first month of 2019.

In Campbell County, unemployment rose from 4.3 in December to 5.1% in January, an increase of eight-tenths of a percentage point.

Knox County continues to see the lowest unemployment rate of any county in our listening area, but in January, they also saw an increase, going from 2.5% in December to 3.0%, a half-percentage-point increase.

Morgan County’s unemployment rate rose by nine-tenths of a point between December and January, climbing from 3.8 to 4.7%.

Roane County saw unemployment increase from 3.7% in December to 4.5% in January, an increase of eight-tenths of a percentage.

Union County’s unemployment rate also increased between the last month of 2018 and the first month of 2019, climbing eight-tenths of a point from 3.6 to 4.4%.
The January 2019 unemployment data for each of Tennessee’s counties can be found here.

About Jim Harris

Jim Harris has been WYSH's News & Sports Director since 2000. In addition to reporting local news, he is the play-by-play voice for Clinton High School football, boys' and girls' basketball and baseball. Catch Jim live weekdays beginning at 6:20 am for live local news, sports, weather and traffic plus the Community Bulletin Board, shenanigans with Ron Meredith and more on the Country Club Morning Show on WYSH & WQLA. Jim lives in Clinton with his wife Kelly and daughter Carolina, his mother-in-law and cats Lucius and Oliver.

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