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Jobless rate up, but low

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Roane County’s unemployment rate spiked slightly in May but still remains lower than it was a year ago, according to figures released late last month by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Eighty-eight of Tennessee’s 95 counties saw an increase over the month, while the rate decreased in five counties and remained unchanged in two counties.

Roane County’s May jobless rate was 6.3 percent, an increase of 0.4 percent.

The county had an unemployment rate of 8.0 in May 2013.

The statewide rate in May was also 6.3 percent, an increase of 0.5 percent. Nationally, the jobless rate was 6.1 percent, up 0.2 percent over April’s standing.

Middle Tennessee leads the way with low unemployment rates. Lincoln County registered the lowest rate at 4.4 percent, followed by Williamson County at 4.6 percent. Both Wilson and Rutherford counties had rates of 5.0 percent.

The highest unemployment rate was in nearby Scott County at 12.5 percent. West Tennessee’s Lauderdale County registered 10.6 percent, followed by Pickett County at 9.9 percent.

Jobless rates for surrounding counties in May were Anderson, 6.1, up 0.5 percent; Cumberland, 7.4, up 0.6 percent; Knox, 5.3, up 0.6 percent; Loudon, 5.8, up 0.6 percent; McMinn, 7.0, up 0.5 percent; Meigs, 7.7, up 0.4 percent; Monroe, 7.7, up 0.4 percent; Morgan, 8.5, up 0.2 percent; and Rhea, 7.9, up 0.3 percent.