Cherokee County's 8,321 jobless people aren't likely to care that the north metro county has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state calculated to be 7.2 percent in January.
The counties with lower unemployment – other than neighboring Forsyth County – have populations anywhere from half to less than 10 percent of the population of Cherokee County, with a correspondingly lower labor force.
Cherokee County's labor force was 116,088 in January, or 110 fewer than in December 2012. The unemployment rate rose in January from 6.9 percent the month before. A year earlier the Cherokee unemployment rate was much worse at 7.8 percent and with 8,902 people jobless.
Closer to home, signs that the economy may be turning around are visible in Canton. to integrate itself with the established community.
Forsyth County – 6.7%
Forsyth County's unemployment rate of 6.7 percent in January was only beaten by five other counties, and all of them have labor forces that are just a fraction the size.
A combination of a larger labor force and more people losing jobs increased Forsyth's preliminary unemployment rate by two tenths of a percent, compared to the final December 2012 rate of 6.5 percent. A year ago the unemployment rate was even higher at 7.1 percent.
Forsyth had 95,383 people in the labor force in January, a decrease of 157 workers. The number of unemployed increased by 200 people. This includes new workers to the labor force and other workers who filed for unemployment claims.
Bartow County – 9.3%
Heading west to Bartow County, the unemployment rate has jumped all the way to 9.3 percent from the previous month's rate of 8.6 percent. The labor force continues to grow, rising to 49,609 in January.
The number of people working dropped by 180 people. The increase in workers and decrease in how many are working pushed the unemployment rate up seven tenths of a percent from December 2012, when it was down to 8.6 percent.
Even the rise above 9 percent is still well below the January 2012 jobless rate, which topped double digits to hit 10.2 percent.
After the Jan. 30 tornado, we'll have to wait for February's statistics to see the full affect of that devastation on business.
Cobb County – 7.8%
Cobb County beat the statewide and metro Atlanta unemployment rates of 8.7 percent. One of the state's larger county's, Cobb had a 7.8 percent unemployment rate in January. That's two tenths of a percent higher than it was the previous month, but it's eight tenths of a percent lower than it was a year ago, who the rate was 8.6 percent.
Cobb had 381,085 people in the labor force in December, and 29,693 of them were counted as jobless. The county lost 754 people from its labor force in a month's time.
Paulding County – 8.2%
Despite Paulding County's labor force dropping by 172 workers from the previous month, the unemployment rate rose to 8.2 percent in January. But 276 fewer people were working, causing the slight increase of one tenth of a percent in the jobless rate.
The 6,072 people who are unemployed in Paulding County most likely aren't too enthused that the county beat the state and Georgia jobless rates of 8.7 percent.
January's unemployment rate is still lower than the rate from a year earlier – 8.9 percent.
Douglas County – 8.8%
Douglas County's unemployment rate in January jumped above 9 percent. Out of the 69,578 people in the civilian labor force, 6,403 of them were unemployed.The additional 353 people who were jobless helped push the rate to 9.2 percent.
A month earlier, the county's jobless rate was at 8.8 percent.
The latest unemployment statistics keep Douglas County above the state and metro Atlanta average of 8.7 percent.