The preliminary unemployment rate in metro Atlanta fell to 8.5 percent in April, according to State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler. That's the lowest level since December 2008, when it was 7.7 percent. It was at 8.7 percent in March and 9.3 percent in April 2011.
The number of new jobs grew by 14,800 to 2,331,100, the highest number of jobs in metro Atlanta since 2,332,600 in November 2011.
Also, Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined for the ninth consecutive month in April to 8.9 percent, the first time in more than three years that the rate has dropped below nine percent. It fell one-tenth of a percentage point from 9.0 percent in March. The jobless rate was 9.8 percent in April 2011.
The number of new jobs statewide grew by 31,900, to 3,926,000, the highest number of jobs in Georgia since January of 2009. Job growth is up eight-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,894,100 in March. In April 2011, there were 3,904,400 jobs.
Two of the industries that grew are leisure and hospitality (adding 9,200 jobs) and construction (adding 3,400 jobs). There's proof of that growth right here in Midtown: the is getting ready to remodel its ballroom and guest room suites.
According to What Now Atlanta, the hotel filed building permit applications with the City of Atlanta detailing their plans. Renovations, including floor-to-ceiling workovers of the guest rooms and a $400,000 makeover of the ballroom, will begin in August and go on for about six to ten weeks.
There's more growth coming in Midtown, too: Kabbage Inc., an online lending company, is investing about $6 million to double its workforce, adding up to 65 new jobs, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle.