Unemployment rate at 9.3%

By Russell Hood
The Webster Progress-Times

The unemployment rate for Webster County decreased a full a percentage point to 9.3 percent in November, according to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security.

This is the first time the county unemployment rate has dipped below 10 percent since October and November 2008, when the rates were also 9.3 percent both of those months.

The jobless rate was 10.3 percent in October, while unemployment was at 10.8 percent in November 2013. The county has a 12-month moving-average unemployment rate of 11 percent.

Records show the number of unemployed in the county was at 300 in November, from a labor force that totaled 3,220. The labor force decreased by 80 workers from the previous month.

MDES statistics from 1970 forward show the county’s highest unemployment rate for November came in 1995, when it reached 17.1 percent. The lowest rate for that period was in 1973, when it dropped to 2.1 percent.

Mississippi’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.3 percent in November while the national average was 5.8 percent, also as seasonally adjusted.

Rankin County posted the lowest unemployment rate for the month of November at 4.1 percent while Clay County had the highest at 13.3 percent. Fifteen counties had unemployment rates equal to higher than Webster’s.

November jobless rates in adjoining counties:
• Oktibbeha, 6.1 percent.
• Grenada, 6.5 percent.
• Calhoun, 7.1 percent.
• Choctaw, 7.2 percent.
• Montgomery, 7.6 percent.
• Chickasaw, 8.9 percent.
• Clay, 13.3 percent.