Milam unemployment rate back to over 11%

Jobless numbers in double figures 23 out of last 25 months

JANUARY UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES * Rates not adjusted for seasonal jobs. JANUARY UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES * Rates not adjusted for seasonal jobs. Unemployment rates across the Central Texas area have jumped to start off the new year, according to reports released Thursday by the Texas Workforce Commission ( TWC). Jobless numbers rose to 11.1 in Milam County for January, the highest since February 2010. Unemployment was at its highest a year ago at 11.8 percent in Milam County.

Its lowest of the past 12 months was 10.3 percent in September. The county’s unemployment rate as been in double figures 23 of the last 25 months.

The county rate was based on a labor force of 10,783 with 9,588 working and 1,195 unemployed. Milam’s numbers rose seventhtenths for the month, compared to 10.4 in December 2010.

The labor force in Milam County has declined 529 people compared to 11,312 in January 2010. The county’s unemployment rate has been above the 10 percent mark since January 2009.

AREA NUMBERS–Milam was not the only one to see a jump in jobless numbers as neighboring county’s unemployment rate also rose.

Most area counties saw their jobless rates increase four- to fivetenths from the previous month. Only Burleson County saw a greater increase than Milam with a jump of 12-tenths since December.

Lee County’s unemployment rate only rose two-tenths for the month.

STATEWIDE–Total nonfarm employment was up by 44,100 jobs in January, representing the addition of 253,900 jobs since a year ago. The Texas seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 8.3 percent, unchanged from December 2010, and below the U.S. January rate of 9.0 percent.

“Employers continued to expand their workforces in January as we saw hiring across a majorit y of Texas industries,” TWC Chairman Tom Pauken said. “ The largest employment increase was in the Trade, Transportation and Utilities industry, which added a robust 15,800 jobs.”

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