Copiah posts double-digit unemployment for May

Seasonal Influences takes Unemployment Rate for Mississippi to 9.6 Percent

Jackson – The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the month of May increased over the month to 9.6 percent from 8.6 percent recorded in the month of April. This was largely affected by seasonal influences, announced the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES).

The rate was significantly higher than one year ago when the May 2008 rate was 6.9 percent. The unemployed total increased by 14,300 while the number of employed persons decreased 6,500.  

The nation’s not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased over the month from 8.6 to 9.1 percent for May and was elevated significantly when compared to the year ago rate of 5.2 percent.  When adjusted for seasonal factors, the national rate increased over the month from 8.9 to 9.4 percent for May 2009 and was almost four percentage points higher than the May 2008 rate of 5.5 percent.

Mississippi’s seasonally adjusted rate increased over the month from 9.1 to 9.6 percent and was almost three percentage points higher than the May 2008 rate of 6.8 percent.

Results from Mississippi’s nonfarm employment survey, which is counted by the location of establishments, reported a not seasonally adjusted decrease of 1,300 in employment over the month and a decrease of 40,200 from one year ago. Industry sectors registering the largest monthly employment gains were Construction, and Leisure & Hospitality. Over the year the largest employment decreases were noted in Manufacturing; Professional & Business Services; Trade, Transportation & Utilities; and Leisure & Hospitality.

Wayne Gasson, Director of the Office of Public Information, indicated that for the month of May 2009, only 24 counties in Mississippi posted unemployment rates less than or equal to the state’s rate of 9.6 percent.  

“Rankin County posted the lowest unemployment rate for the month of May at 6.0 percent followed by Lamar County at 6.4 percent,” he said last Wednesday.  

Unemployment rates increased or remained the same in all but two counties.  Fifty-four counties reported double-digit rates for the month with seven counties reporting rates greater than or equal to 15.0 percent.

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