Alabama jobless rate down to record 2.7%

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama’s unemployment rate is down to a record-low 2.7%, the state said Friday.

A statement from Gov. Kay Ivey’s office said the seasonally adjusted jobless rate for November was one-tenth of a percent better than the October rate of 2.8%. It was also well below the national unemployment rate of 3.5%.

November was the seventh straight month for the state to reach a record low for unemployment.

The rate represented 2.2 million people who were employed compared to about 62,000 who were unemployed. The state’s economy has gained more than 50,000 jobs since this time last year, the statement said.

Wages also increased, with average weekly earnings in November at $863.11, up $1.06 from October. The November number was an increase of $21.56 from November 2018.

About 1.7 million people are working in service industries, and manufacturing employment rose to 273,700.

“Manufacturing employment in Alabama is at its highest level in 11 years,” Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington said in the statement. “Other sectors are currently experiencing their highest levels of employment in history. Employers are hiring, and people are finding work.”

Shelby County in metro Birmingham had the lowest jobless rate at 1.8% while Wilcox County in rural west Alabama was highest at 6.3%.

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