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State jobless rate drops slightly

Alabama’s unemployment rate dropped to 10.8 percent this month, down from 11 percent in April. Since the beginning of the year, wage and salary employment in Alabama has increased by 44,000.
Upturns were seen in government, leisure and hospitality, construction, professional and business services and manufacturing. Some of the increased hiring in the governmental section is related to temporary workers hired for the census.
The number of people applying for unemployment benefits is also down. In May, the number of first time payments made to claimants was 8,594 compared to 12,915 in May 2009.
The counties with the lowest unemployment rates are Shelby at 7.3 percent, Madison at 7.5 percent and Coffee at 7.6 percent. Highest rates were reported by Wilcox at 24 percent, Monroe at 18.5 percent and Dallas at 17.9 percent.