Valdosta’s Initial Jobs Claims Spike in March

Staff Report From Valdosta CEO

Friday, April 24th, 2020

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said Thursday that Valdosta’s initial claims drastically increased in March.
Due to the effects of COVID-19, all MSA’s throughout the state saw a dramatic incline in initial claims along with the unemployment rate.
“Although we are seeing the effects of COVID-19 throughout the state in spikes in unemployment, we are working very diligently to come up with solutions to get Georgians back to work as soon as it is safe to do so,” Butler said.
In Valdosta, the unemployment rate increased 0.8 percentage points in March, reaching 4.5 percent. A year ago, the rate was 3.7 percent.
The number of unemployment claims went up by 967 percent in March, which directly correlated with the number of temporary lay-offs associated with COVID-19. When compared to last March, claims were up by about 1,520 percent.
Valdosta ended March with 55,900 jobs. That number decreased by 200 from April to March and was down by 400 when compared to this time last year.
The labor force decreased in March by 892 and ended the month with 63,919. That number is down 131 when compared to March of 2019.
Valdosta finished the month with 61,058 employed residents.  That number decreased by 1,363 over the month and is down by 646 when compared to the same time a year ago.