Alabama jobless rate drops to 3.6%, wages rise

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.6% last month, and a hiring surge prompted by renewed business activity as the pandemic eases is driving up wages in the state.

The state labor agency said Friday the jobless rate for April was 3.6%. That’s down a bit from March and nearly 10 percentage points below April 2020, when shutdowns prompted by the coronavirus outbreak decimated businesses.

The number represents about 80,000 unemployed people statewide compared to nearly 290,000 at the same time a year ago. With more open jobs than unemployed people, average weekly earnings for business rose to $968 in April, up more than $67 over the year.

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