Government reports show the economy growing for the first time in the third quarter -- growth that is expected to moderate, but continue into next year. But economic growth does not always mean job growth -- and few companies say they are aggressively expanding.
So even if job cuts have eased ever-so-slightly from last fall, hiring has not increased enough to soak up those who are laid-off.
Nearly 131,000 Georgians were receiving state jobless benefits in October, while an additional 146,000 others were paid federally-funded extended benefits.
The state’s official jobless rate in September – adjusted for seasonal variation – was 10.1 percent. That means nearly a half-million Georgians were out of work and looking for a job, not including people who have retired, gone back to school or simply given up looking. The jobless rate for October is to be announced next week.
With hiring anemic, the average Georgian who is laid off draws unemployment checks for 14.4 weeks, the labor department reported: That is a 24 percent increase from October of 2008.
Nationally, new jobless claims slipped slightly last week, but remain above 500,000 – well above the mark that signals a weak job market.