Panola’s jobless rate still above 10 percent 5/2/2014

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 2, 2014

Panola’s jobless rate still above 10 percent

By Rita Howell
Panola County’s unemployment rate has hovered just above 10 percent for the first three months of the year, with the March figure showing a slight increase, to 10.5 percent, according to the latest report from the Mississippi Department of Employment Security.

In January and February the county’s rate was listed at 10.3 percent.

The MDES estimates that Panola County has a labor force of 14,480, with 12,950 listed as employed in March. The report showed 1,530 people were unemployed.

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The state’s unemployment rate for March was 7.9. The nation’s jobless rate was 6.8.

Springtime 2014 has brought nearly a one percent decrease in Panola’s unemployment figures from a year earlier. In March, 2013 Panola’s unemployment rate was 11.3.

The labor force is defined by MDES as the estimated number of people eligible for work or actively seeking employment. But, those figures don’t include people who have given up looking for work or are no longer participating in the labor force.

In comparison to the six surrounding counties, the Panola unemployment rate was more than Lafayette (5.8), Yalobusha (9.3) and Tate (9.3) and less than Tallahatchie (10.9), Quitman (12.7) and Tunica (15.4).

For the month of March 2014, 28 counties in Mississippi posted  unemployment rates less than or equal to the state’s rate of 7.9  percent.

Rankin County posted the lowest unemployment rate for the month of  March at 4.7 percent followed by Scott and Lamar Counties at 5.4  percent. Issaquena County had the highest unemployment rate for March  at 17.5 percent followed by Clay County at 17.2 percent.