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Lincoln jobless rate drops in April

Lincoln County’s unemployment rate is back down to its 12-month average after a slight rise in March.

The county had 690 people who were looking for work but unable to find employment during the month of April. That’s 4.8 percent of the county’s 14,460 person work force. March’s rate was 5 percent, with 720 unemployed out of a workforce of 14,370.

Statewide, the labor rate dropped to 4.6 percent, making April the 19th consecutive month for Mississippi’s rate to remain below 5 percent. The current number of jobs in the state — 1,164,200 — is the highest number the state has ever recorded.

The Magnolia State recorded 7,800 new workers with employment and 2,100 fewer unemployed. Industries with the largest gains were leisure and hospitality; trade, transportation and utilities; and manufacturing.

Twenty-six counties posted unemployment rates less than or equal to the statewide rate. Rankin again claimed the top spot at 3.4 percent. The county claimed 2,610 unemployed persons, however, out of a labor force of 14,460. The county with the highest unemployment rate — Jefferson — had a percentage of 10.9, representing 210 unemployed out of 1,910 available for work.

The county with the largest number of unemployed was Hinds County with 4,920. The labor force of 108,600, however, means the labor rate is only 4.5 percent. The county with the least number of unemployed was Issaquena, with a percentage of 9.3, though that number represents a real-world total of only 40 people from a labor force of 390.

Monthly estimates of the labor force, employment, unemployment and unemployment rate are generated by the Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program, a cooperative effort between the Bureau of Labor Statistics and State Employment Security agencies. The Bureau of Labor Statistics defines an individual employed if they did any work at all for pay or profit during the survey week; this includes all part-time and temporary work as well as full time year round employment. Unemployed individuals are those who do not have a job, have actively looked for work during the past four weeks and are currently available for work. The sum of employed and unemployed produces the Civilian Labor Force.