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Jobless rate declines

Pike County’s unemployment rate dropped 0.5 percent from march to April according to new numbers released by the Alabama Department of Labor.

According to the statistics, unemployment dropped from 4 percent in March to 3.5 percent in April, with a total of 539 people unemployed in the workforce.

“If you look at it, we’re going to be creating about that many jobs over the next year,” Reeves said. “There’s not very many communities that can say that.”

Of course, that doesn’t mean the county will reach zero unemployment, but Reeves said the creation of jobs is a testament to the strong workforce and development of industry and retail occurring in the county currently.

The drop comes during a slight increase in unemployment in the state overall, despite what officials are calling record employment in the state.

The preliminary, seasonally adjusted jobless rate for April is 3.8 percent. That’s up one-tenth of a percent from March, but it’s still below the rate from a year before of 4.1 percent.

The April rate represents 83,565 unemployed people in the state. But a news release from the Labor Department says the state still has more people working than ever before for the fourth straight month. More than 2.1 million people had jobs last month.

The unemployment rate can increase despite the high employment level as the labor force expands.

Shelby County in metro Birmingham has the lowest jobless rate at 2.4 percent. Wilcox County in west Alabama is worst with an unemployment rate of 7 percent.