Webster County

From Press, Staff Reports

Webster County’s unemployment rate fell in June compared to a year ago, figures released last month show.

However, the county’s jobless rate of 12.9 percent in June was up from the revised rate of 11.2 percent in May, according to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security. In June 2011, the rate was 15.2 percent.

Statistics from MDES, which date back to 1970, show Webster County’s highest unemployment rate for June came in 1982, when it reached 20.7 percent. The lowest rate for the month was in 1973, when it dropped to 3.2 percent.

Seasonally adjusted, the state’s jobless rate rose to 8.8 percent in June, from 8.7 percent in May, according to MDES. In June 2011, the rate was 10.8 percent.

For the month of June, only 25 counties in Mississippi posted unemployment rates less than or equal to the state’s unemployment rate. Rankin County had the lowest jobless rate at 5.9 percent, while 11 counties reported rates of 11 percent or higher. Clay County was the highest among the 82 counties at 17.9 percent.

In comparison to the seven surrounding counties, Webster County’s unemployment rate for May was less than Clay’s 17.9 percent but more than Calhoun (9.5), Grenada (9.8), Choctaw (11.2), Chickasaw (11.3), Oktibbeha (11.4) and Montgomery (12.7).

County-level rates are not adjusted to cancel out predictable seasonal changes. They usually rise in June as students and teachers seek jobs. Only Marshall County saw its jobless rate fall from May to June.

The national unemployment rate stayed at 8.2 percent in June, below June 2011′s 9.1 percent.