City, county unemployment continues to rise

Staff Writer

Starkville and Oktibbeha County’s unemployment rates continued to rise as expected in June, according to preliminary data from the Mississippi Department of Employment Security.

Oktibbeha County’s unemployment rate rose from 5 percent in May to 6.5 percent in June, and Starkville’s unemployment rate rose from 4.4 percent in May to 5.3 percent in June.

MDES Chief Labor Market Information Officer Mary Willoughby said, based on past trends, unemployment rises during the summer months while colleges and schools are out for summer vacation.

Willoughby said unemployment rates are expected to drop again in August and September with school resumes.

In June, Starkville’s labor force, which is made up of everyone who is employed or seeking employment, was reported to be 11,830 people, with 11,200 employed and 630 unemployed. Oktibbeha County’s labor force was reported to be 21,840 people, with 20,430 employed and 1,410 unemployed in June.

Other Golden Triangle counties unemployment rates include: Chickasaw County (6 percent), Choctaw County (5.7 percent), Clay County (7.6 percent), Lowndes County (6.2 percent), Monroe County (5.8 percent), Noxubee County (8.7 percent), Webster County (6.3 percent) and Winston County (6.7 percent).

Mississippi’s unemployment rate rose from 5.1 percent in May to 5.7 percent in June. Mississippi’s labor force in June was reported to be 1,303,500 people, with 1,228,800 employed and 74,700 unemployed.

In June, Rankin County reported the lowest unemployment rate with 4 percent, while Jefferson County reported the highest with 14.4 percent.

The nation’s unemployment rate rose from 3.6 percent in May to 4.2 percent in June. The nation’s labor force in June was reported to be 162,140,000 Americans, with 155,576,000 employed and 6,564,000 unemployed.