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Jobless rate still falling for Lincoln County

Lincoln County’s unemployment rate for September was 4.7 percent, continuing to drop from August’s 5.3 percent, according to the Mississippi Department of Employment Statistics recently released.

The labor rate had fallen from 6.3 percent in July.

It’s the county’s lowest unemployment rate for September in the past five years. The September 2012 unemployment rate was 8.7 percent.

Rankin and Union counties were tied for the state’s lowest unemployment rate for September with 3.4 percent. Forty-three of Mississippi’s counties were at or below the state average unemployment rate of 5.2 percent. Twelve counties were below the national average of 4.2 percent.

Lincoln County sat at number 27, tied with Marshall County, at 4.7 — a lower unemployment rate than any of the seven counties that connect to it. With a labor force of 14,490, the county’s rate of 4.7 percent translates to 680 people unemployed.

Lincoln County may have had an estimated 680 people unemployed, but that number is much better than the previous month’s total of 800 — 5.5 percent of 14,590 people. If estimates are correct, that means 20 more individuals were able to gain employment and 100 left the county to find employment elsewhere.

Lincoln’s 12-month average unemployment rate is 5.4 percent, with 13,810 persons employed out of a labor force of 14,600.

The fewest number of people unemployed for September in any of Mississippi’s counties was 30, in the river county of Issaquena. However, because Issaquena had a labor force of only 380, that 30 means the county had a high unemployment rate — 7.7 percent.

Mississippi remains behind the national average of 4.2 percent in unemployment, but has made strides forward — August’s rate was 5.3 and September 2016 saw a rate of 5.7 percent. Lincoln County is not far behind the national average and continues to move in the right direction.