October data shows improvements in MS employment

Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, December 1, 2021

The holiday season this year might be a bit merrier after all since the state’s unemployment rate reflected improvement in October from last month, according to Mississippi Department of Employment Security numbers.

Mississippi’s “not seasonally adjusted unemployment” (a pattern not considered regular) rate for October 2021 was 3.9 percent, decreasing eight-tenth of a percentage point from September’s rate of 4.7 percent. When compared to the October 2020 rate of 6.2 percent, the rate decreased 2.3 percentage points. The number of unemployed decreased 9,800 in October, while the employed total increased 3,300 from the prior month.

The Mississippian “civilian labor force” – everyone 16 and up who has a job or is looking for a job – fell by 3,000 during October to 1,272,200, while the number of employed citizens increased during the month by 1,100 to 1,202,400.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The number of unemployed Mississippians decreased by 4,100 to 69,800, the fewest number of unemployed Mississippians since May 2019. In October 2021, there were 7,700 more jobs in Mississippi than in September 2021, and 26,900 more than October 2020, according to the seasonally adjusted results from a survey of Mississippi employers.

The nation’s rate of “seasonally adjusted unemployment” (one that more or less follows a pattern year to year) at 4.6 percent decreased two-tenths of a percentage point during October and 2.3 percentage points for the year.

In Mississippi, 27 counties posted unemployment rates less than or equal to the state’s rate of 3.9 percent in October. Rankin County posted the lowest unemployment rate at 2.7 percent followed by Lafayette County at 2.8 percent. Jefferson County had the highest unemployment rate at 12.2 percent followed by Humphreys County at 8.8 percent.

Though there were yet still fewer workers in Lincoln County for October, more were employed. Out of 14,860 available workers 16 and up, 14,340 are employed, while 530 are unemployed, spelling out a 3.5 percent unemployment rate. That compares to 14,910 available workers 16 and up in September, with 14,280 employed and a 4.3 percent unemployment rate. In August, Lincoln County had an available labor force of 14,780 people; 820 were unemployed, or 5.6 percent of the labor force. The county had 950 unemployed from a work force of 15,180 in July — a drop of 400 in the work force and 130 fewer without work.

In Lawrence County, out 4,560 workers, 4,340 were employed and 220 were not, for a 4.9 percent unemployment rate. In comparison to September, there were more available workers – 4,600 – with 4,330 employed, equaling a 5.8 percent unemployment rate.

For Franklin County, out of 2,700 workers, 2,570 were employed, 130 were not, for a 5.0 percent unemployment rate, which is down from last month. Franklin County had more 30 fewer workers in October, as compared to in September, when it still had 2,570 of the 2,730 available workers employed, for a 5.7 percent unemployment rate.

Last year at this time In the United States, 161,053,000 workers made up the civilian labor force. Of those, 150,433,000 were employed, 10,620,000 were not, and the unemployment rate sat at 6.6 percent. In Mississippi, there were 1,257,700 available workers, with 1,180,100 employed and 77,600 not, for a 6.2 percent unemployment rate.

A count in September and then in October of unemployment rate percentages of counties bordering Lincoln County is as follows:

• Copiah, 5.4 percent (September) to 4.5 percent (October)

• Lawrence, 5.9 percent (September) to 4.9 percent (October)

• Franklin, 5.7 percent (September) to 5.0 (October)

• Walthall, 6.0 percent (September) to 5.0 (October)

• Pike, 6.1 percent (September) to 5.1 percent (October)

• Amite, 6.2 percent (September) to 5.4 percent (October)

• Jefferson, 15.7 percent (September) to 12.2 percent (October)

Initial Lincoln County filings of unemployment claims in October numbered 36 as opposed to 33 in September and 150 in October 2020.

In Lawrence County, 19 claims were made in October, 19 in September and 53 this time last year.

In Franklin County, eight unemployment claims were filled in October as compared to 6 in September and 30 in September 2020.

In October, at little over $4 million was paid in unemployed benefits, compared to about $25 million last year.

The labor force includes people age 16 and older who are able to work and are either employed or looking for work. This number does not include full-time students, members of the Armed Forces or those with farm jobs, according to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security.

Monthly estimates of the labor force, employment, unemployment and the unemployment rate are generated by the Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program, a cooperative program between the Bureau of Labor Statistics and State Employment Security agencies.