Jobs, Employment and Work Force Up in Columbus During 2017

Staff Report From Columbus CEO

Friday, January 26th, 2018

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said that 2017 was a banner year for job creation, employment and work force gains in metro Columbus.

The five-county metropolitan statistical area, which includes the Georgia counties of Chattahoochee, Harris, Marion and Muscogee and Russell in Alabama, ended the year with 500 new jobs. The area also gained 2,000 more employed residents, increased its workforce, and saw unemployment drop by 1.2 percent. Columbus ranked 10th in Georgia for job creation among 14 MSAs tracked by the GDOL.

“This is a very good year for the Columbus area,” Butler said. “All of the major indicators trended in the right direction. I’m expecting the same will continue in 2018.”

While metro Columbus lost 200 jobs in December, the area added 500 over the year to end 2017 122,800 jobs. Most of the annual job growth came in education and health services, leisure and hospitality, and professional and business services.

The metro area also added 89 more employed residents last month. At year’s end, metro Columbus posted 118,842 employed residents, up by 1,883 over the year.  

Metro Columbus’ labor force, the number of residents with jobs and those unemployed but actively looking for work, grew by 121 in December. The area ended the year with a labor force of 125,214, an increase of 445 over the year.

In December 891 initial claims for unemployment insurance were filed, up by 26 percent from the previous month. As compared to last December, claims are down by 20 percent. Most of the annual decrease in claims came in manufacturing.

Meanwhile, the metro area’s unemployment rate fell from 6.3 percent to 5.1 over the 12-month cycle. The December rate, at 5.1 percent, was unchanged from the previous month.