As 500 more people found jobs in March, it pushed down the metro Augusta unemployment rate.
The Georgia Department of Labor reported Thursday that the metro’s unemployment rate was 6.6 percent in March, a slight decrease from 6.7 percent in February. The rate was 7.7 percent in March a year ago.
The department reported last week that there were more jobs in education and health services, construction and professional and business services.
Labor department data said there were 242,228 people with jobs in the area and 17,107 unemployed.
The six counties that make up the Augusta metro statistical area had mixed results. Richmond, Columbia and McDuffie counties ticked upward in jobless percentage, while Aiken, Edgefield and Burke counties went downward.
Comparing other metro areas in Georgia, Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 5.1 percent, and the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 9.4 percent. In South Carolina, Greenville had the lowest at 4.5 percent, while Florence had the highest at 6.3 percent.
Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for March was 7 percent, down from 7.1 percent in February. The rate was 8.4 percent in March a year ago. South Carolina reported 5.5 percent unemployment for March, also a decline from February.