Jobless Rate Up

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Alabama's unemployment rate inched upward in October to 5.6%. September's figure was 5.5%.

Department of Industrial Relations director Phyllis Kennedy said the October numbers are below the 5.9% rate posted one year ago.

Kennedy said the Alabama figure represents 120,300 unemployed Alabamians. Nationally, the unemployment rate was 6.1%.

The department said the majority of job losses over the past year occurred in the manufacturing, trade, transportation and public utilities sectors. The largest job gains were in the construction industry.

Counties recording the highest unemployment rates were Washington with 15.3%; Wilcox at 14.9%; Bullock's rate was 13.9% and 12.8% in Lowndes County.

Shelby County recorded the lowest jobless rate at 2.6%. Other counties included Blount at 3.3%; Tuscaloosa with 3.5%.

Baldwin and St. Clair counties each had 4.2% unemployment.