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ALABAMA (WHNT) – March’s unemployment numbers continued ticking down, and it’s a record low for the Yellowhammer State.

Gov. Kay Ivey’s office announced Friday that the March unemployment rate statewide was 2.9%, tying the lowest level on record, which was last seen in September 2019. The numbers are preliminary and seasonally adjusted. By comparison, February 2022’s unemployment rate was 3.0% and the same time last year saw a 3.7% unemployment rate.

The 2.9% unemployment rate represents 65,485 unemployed Alabamians – the lowest on record – compared to 68,663 in February and 82,443 in March 2021.

Alabama has been on a roll as our folks have been eager to get to work, and the fact that we have once again hit our record low unemployment rate is proof positive of that. We are not relenting our efforts, and I am confident Alabama will continue powering in the right direction because of our hardworking men and women. Truly, the best is yet to come.

Governor Kay Ivey

The state saw 9,901 more Alabamians in the labor force, which now stands at just shy of 2.3 million. 36,734 more Alabamians found jobs in March – a total of just over 2.2 million Alabamians are employed across the state.

The largest gains between February and March 2022 were in the government sector (+2,500 jobs), along with the construction and leisure/hospitality sectors (+2,200 jobs each).

“We are continuing to see healthy job growth, with more than 40,000 jobs gained since last year. Wages in several sectors saw growth again this month, and two sectors reached an even higher record since last month.”

Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington

Between March 2021 and March 2022, trade, transportation, and utility jobs increased by 11,900, leisure and hospitality grew by 10,500 jobs, and construction grew by 4,500 jobs.

Statewide, the lowest unemployment rates were reported in Shelby County (1.7%), Cullman County (1.8%), and a three-way tie for third-lowest (1.9%) shared between three North Alabama counties: Limestone, Marshall, and Morgan.

The cities with the lowest unemployment rate were scattered across central Alabama: Alabaster and Vestavia Hills (1.4%), Homewood (1.5%), Hoover and Trussville (1.6%).

Wilcox County had the highest county-level unemployment rate (8.8%). Lowndes County followed at 6.5%, and Perry County rounded out the top three at 6.3%. Selma had the highest city-level unemployment (6.9%), Prichard followed at 5%, with Anniston rounding out the top three at 4.7%.