For Immediate Release: March 14, 2022
Alabama’s January Unemployment Rate Holds Steady at 3.1%
MONTGOMERY – Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington announced today that Alabama’s preliminary, seasonally adjusted January unemployment rate is 3.1%, unchanged from December 2021’s rate, and below January 2021’s rate of 4.0%. January’s rate represents 69,141 unemployed persons, compared to 69,434 in December and 90,390 in January 2021.
“Alabama’s healthy economic environment is carrying on, with our unemployment rate holding steady yet again for a fourth consecutive month,” said Washington. “While holding steady may not seem like a positive thing to some, given the uncertainties that currently exist in our national economy, I’m proud to say that, so far, Alabama is maintaining positive employment trends.”
“Additionally, our job growth has continued, with more than 33,000 jobs created since January of last year,” Washington continued. “Wages have shown yearly growth as well, with total private weekly earnings up $30.60. Other industries, such as leisure and hospitality and education and health services, have also seen remarkable yearly growth.”
Over the year, wage and salary employment increased 33,500, with gains in the trade, transportation, and utilities sector (+11,200), the leisure and hospitality sector (+10,100), and the construction sector (+4,500), among others.
Over the year, average weekly wages increased by $30.60. The leisure and hospitality sector saw yearly wage growth of $34.93, and the education and health services sector saw yearly growth of $101.88.
All 67 counties experienced an unemployment rate drop, over the year.
Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are: Shelby County at 2.2%, Marshall, Limestone, and Cullman Counties at 2.5%, and Morgan, Elmore, and Blount Counties at 2.6%. Counties with the highest unemployment rates are: Wilcox County at 11.2%, Lowndes County at 8.6%, and Perry County at 8.4%.
Major cities with the lowest unemployment rates are: Homewood at 2.0%, Alabaster at 2.1%, and Athens and Madison at 2.3%. Major cities with the highest unemployment rates are: Selma at 8.0%, Prichard at 7.3%, and Bessemer at 5.6%.
Members of the media seeking more information should contact Communications Director Tara Hutchison.
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“Seasonal adjustment” refers to BLS’s practice of anticipating certain trends in the labor force, such as hiring during the holidays or the surge in the labor force when students graduate in the spring, and removing their effects to the civilian labor force.
The Current Population (CPS), or the household survey, is conducted by the Census Bureau and identifies members of the work force and measures how many people are working or looking for work.
The establishment survey, which is conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a division of the U.S. Department of Labor, surveys employers to measure how many jobs are in the economy. This is also referred to as wage and salary employment.