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Rockdale unemployment rate rises slightly, lower than last year
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The unemployment rate in Rockdale County jumped a little to 7.1 percent in January, according to the Georgia Department of Labor.

The rate in December was 6.9 percent.

With the holiday shopping season complete, many of the part-time and temporary positions were terminated, which caused the number of unemployed residents to rise by 74 to 3,014 over the course of the month.

Georgia Commissioner of Labor Mark Butler offered his perspective on the matter.

"We are still over a point lower than we were 12 months ago," he said. "The same time period in January 2014 we were showing an 8.3 percent unemployment rate, so (that's) a significant drop in the last 12 months."

However, while unemployment saw increase, initial unemployment claims were sloping downward from December to January.

"That's especially good news when you consider the fact a lot of times we do see initial claims increase from December to January to the fact that holiday hiring is over in that same period," said Butler.

The unemployment rate in for the state fell to 6.4 percent in January from 6.6 percent in December.