Georgia unemployment rate holds firm in July


ATLANTA – Georgia’s unemployment rate held steady last month at 3.2%, three-tenths of a percent lower than the national average, the state Department of Labor reported Thursday.

The labor force was up by 9,038 in July to more than 5.3 million, an all-time high, with the workforce participation rate increasing to 61.4%. The number of employed Georgians rose for the ninth consecutive month to more than 5.1 million, also a record.

“Georgia’s economic resilience hinges on a delicate balance between job creation and industry growth,” Georgia Commissioner of Labor Bruce Thompson said Thursday.

“While we are thrilled to have an unemployment rate lower than the national average and a record number of workers to fill essential roles, we are maintaining a watchful eye on unemployment trends to ensure a sustainable path forward.”

One trend the labor department is tracking closely is the filing of first-time unemployment claims, which increased by 34% last month to 31,410.

Meanwhile, job numbers in July were at record highs in leisure and hospitality, one of the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic, as well as financial activities. There were 526,300 Georgians working in leisure and hospitality last month and 282,400 employed in financial activities.

The sectors with the most over-the-month gains were administrative and support services, which added 1,700 jobs in July, and health care and social assistance and accommodation and food services. Each of those two sectors gained 1,100 jobs during the month.

More than 115,000 jobs listings were posted online for Georgians to access. The greatest needs were in health care, which listed 15,272 openings; administrative and support services, which posted 10,425 jobs; and retail trade, which listed 9,875 openings.