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Jobless rates rise in recent months

Joblessness in Kerr County increased from December to January about the same rate as the state and the nation, according to recent figures from the Texas Workforce Commission.

The county’s unemployment rate was 4.1 percent in January, compared to 3.5 percent the month before. During the same period, Texas’ rate went from 4.1 percent to 4.6 percent, compared to the U.S. increase of 5.4 percent to 6.1 percent.

However, Workforce Solutions Alamo’s executive director indicated the longer term trend has been positive in the greater San Antonio area.

“January 2014 to January 2015 shows a very strong job picture in the Alamo region,” Gail L. Hathaway said in a recent statement. “We had three industries report double-digit growth rates over the year.”

Employment in the sectors of oil and gas, building construction and employment services increased 15.1 percent, 18.2 percent and 10.6 percent, respectively, in the region, according to Workforce Solutions.

Related: U.S. jobless claims off seven-month high; oil layoffs watched

Regionally, trade, transportation and utilities reported the largest decline in jobs — 5,400, or a 3.2 decrease from December to January. But the sector remained positive long term with 4,900 jobs added since January 2014.

From December to January, the leisure and hospitality industry declined regionally by 2,500 jobs, or 1.5 percent, but increased by 200 — .2 percent — over the year. Education and health services lost 3,000 jobs but gained 5,700 since this time last year. The government sector lost 2,500 jobs — a 1.5 decrease — but increased by 1,400 since January 2014.

People who were unemployed who might otherwise be in the labor force in the U.S. numbered 9.5 million, including 602,806 Texans and 860 Kerr County residents, according to recent Texas Workforce Commission figures.

According to Workforce Solutions, the average jobless rate was 4.1 percent for the counties of Atascosa, Bandera, Comal, Frio, Gillespie, Guadalupe, Karnes, Kendall, Kerr, Medina and Wilson. Frio County registered the lowest unemployment rate in January amongst the counties at 3.2 percent, while Atascosa and Medina County registered the highest rates at 4.4 percent.

This article was written by Sean Batura from Kerrville Daily Times, Texas and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

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