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Jobless rate holds steady

Butler County’s unemployment rate remained unchanged in May based on the latest figures released Friday by the Alabama Department of Labor.

The county’s unemployment rate was 7.9 percent in May, the same rate as it was in April.

Alabama saw a slight drop in its unemployment rate from 6.9 percent in April to 6.8 percent in May.

“My goal is for every Alabamian who wants a job to have the opportunity to find a job, and we are heading in the right direction,” Gov. Robert Bentley said. “Each month since I have been governor, the number of jobs has increased when compared to the same month one year earlier, and initial unemployment claims continue to be the lowest in five years. While we still have a long way to go before Alabama is at full employment, we are making progress.”

Crenshaw County, which neighbors Butler County, is among the counties with the lowest unemployment rates in the state. It saw a dip in its unemployment rate from 6.1 percent in April to 5.7 percent in May. The news wasn’t as good for Lowndes County, which saw its jobless rate rise to 11.9 percent from 10.8 percent.

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates are Shelby County at 4.4 percent, Lee County at 4.8 percent, and Cullman and Baldwin Counties at 5.1 percent.

The counties with the highest unemployment rates are Wilcox County at 15.6 percent, Dallas County at 12.1 percent, and Lowndes County at 11.9 percent.