Savannah area's jobless rate down to 8.6 percent in March

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in the metro Savannah area decreased to 8.6 percent in March, down five-tenths of a percentage point from a revised 9.1 percent in February, according to the Georgia Dept. of Labor.

The jobless rate in the metro Savannah area in March a year ago was also 8.6 percent.

The drop is a result of fewer layoffs in construction, manufacturing, trade and accommodations and food services.

"The unemployment rate decreased in Savannah, as well as in all of the state's other 24 local areas," said State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler in a statement. "This is encouraging, and hopefully indicates that a modest recovery may be building throughout the state."

The lowest rate, at 7.3 percent was in metro Athens, while the highest rate, at 11.7 percent, was in the Altamaha region around Dublin, according to labor department data.

Georgia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for March was 10.0 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point, from a revised 10.2 percent in February. The state's jobless rate was also 10.2 percent in March 2010.

March marked the 42nd consecutive month that Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 8.8 percent.

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