Hopkins County’s jobless rate was estimated at 5.1 percent in March, according to the latest report by TWC, the same as in February of this year.
The March rate was up 1.2 percent points from March of 2008, when the rate was 3.9 percent. It was also the lowest jobless rate in the immediate eight-county region.
The figure was more than 1.5 percentage points below the state unemployment rate, which continued to be the nation’s best in March at 6.7 percent, up from 6.6 percent in February. The national rate, not seasonally adjusted, was 9 percent.
Hopkins County’s totals were the highest for the month of March since 2004, when the rate reached 5.6 percent, but not far off the average for the other nine years of the decade. From 2000 to 2008, the average jobless rate in March for Hopkins County was 4.67 percent, ranging from a high of 45.9 percent in 2003 to a low of 3.8 percent in 2007.
Meanwhile, the number of people living in the county who had a job rose from February to March. The TWC estimates put the number of people employed in March at 16,642, up from 16,504 in February. (The March job total was down by one from the same month in 2008, however.)
The rise in the number of people in the county working from February to March was offset by an increase in the civilian labor force, or the number of people either employed or looking for jobs. The CLF increased from 17,398 in February to 17,532 in March.
Hopkins County also had the lowest unemployment rate in the immediate region in March, as well as the smallest increase in the joblessness when compared to the same month in 2008.
The surrounding counties and their unemployment rates in March (followed by the change from March of 2008):
Delta County: 6.8 percent (up from 4.4 percent one year ago)
Franklin County: 5.5 percent (up from 3.9 percent)
Hopkins County: 5.1 percent (up from 3.9 percent)
Hunt County: 6.9 percent (up from 4.9 percent)
Lamar County: 6.9 percent (up from 4.9 percent)
Rains County: 6.7 percent (up from 4.7 percent)
Titus County: 6.6 percent (up from 3.9 percent)
Wood County: 7 percent (up from 4.5 percent)
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