Tennessee unemployment rate falls to 5.1 percent

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Tennessee’s unemployment rate is continuing to gradually decline.

In March, unemployment in Tennessee was at 5.1 percent, down .2 percent from February and .1 percent from January.

The trend follows the national unemployment rate, which fell two-tenths of a percent to 4.5 percent in march. Over the past year, Tennessee’s unemployment rate increased by half a percentage point to 4.6 percent while the national rate of 5.0 percent decreased by half a point.

“This report shows Tennesseans are finding work in a growing workforce,” shared Commissioner Burns Phillips. “When the labor force grows quicker than residents can find work, unemployment rates take a hit and that’s exactly what we’ve seen over the past 12 months.”

From February to March, the total nonfarm employment increased by 8,600 jobs. The largest increases occurred in administrative/support/waste services, local government, and state government.

“We’re bringing a great number of job opportunities to the state, helping us achieve our main objective of putting the people of Tennessee to work. This month’s rate shows the hard work of several state agencies is paying off,” said Phillips.

Nonfarm employment increased over the year by 63,500 jobs. The largest increases occurred in professional/business services, leisure/hospitality, and trade/transportation/utilities.

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