Union County’s jobless rate for September crept up to 4.6 percent from 4.4 percent the previous month.

Even with the increase, however, Union County tied for sixth-lowest rate in the state along with Lafayette and Smith counties. The rate here had been 5.0 percent for July.

Most Northeast Mississippi counties reported roughly similar increases.

Union County retains its position as second-lowest unemployment in the north half of Mississippi, behind only DeSoto County with 4.3 percent.

The slight increase in unemployment came with a decrease in the size of the labor force, down from 13,520 in August to13,270 in September. That means 12,660 were employed in Union County during September while 610 were unable to find work.

As has been the trend for many months, Union County’s jobless rate is lower than the state or national average. The number for Mississippi is 5.9 percent unemployed in September and 4.9 percent nationally.

In Mississippi, Issaquena and Jefferson counties tied for the highest unemployment rate at 11.8 percent, but that is better than the13.7 percent rate for August.

Employment officials point out that a county will always have some unemployment because people are changing jobs or at least temporarily out of work for various reasons.

National and state figures are adjusted to take into account seasonal employment but county figures are not.

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.


Northeast Mississippi unemployment rates:

County            June ’15            July ’15            Aug. ’15            Sept. ‘15

Alcorn            6.0            5.8            4.9            5.2

Benton            8.6            8.4            6.5            7.0

Calhoun            6.4            6.5            5.2            5.2

Chickasaw            8.6            8.7            7.4            7.5

Clay            11.4            11.6            9.2            9.3

Itawamba            6.3            6.2            5.0            5.3

Lafayette            6.0            5.8            4.4            4.6

Lee            6.2            6.1            5.1            5.3

Marshall            7.7            7.6            6.1            6.5

Monroe            8.5            8.7            6.9            7.0

Oktibbeha            7.6            7.2            5.5            5.4

Pontotoc            6.2            6.0            5.2            5.4

Prentiss            6.6            6.4            5.2            5.5

Tippah            7.4            7.1            5.9            6.2

Tishomingo            6.9            6.8            5.6            5.6

Union            5.3            5.0            4.4            4.6



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