Bedford County's jobless rate dropped significantly in November, falling to 7.8 percent, according to preliminary numbers released Thursday by the state department of labor.
The unemployment rate dropped nearly an entire percentage point - 0.9 percent, from the revised rate for October of 8.7 percent. At this time last year, the jobless rate for the county was at 9.3 percent, meaning that unemployment has fallen 1.5 percent over the past 12 months.
Labor force estimates showed the county had a work force of 22,240, with 20,500 estimated to be working and 1,740 without a job.
Tennessee's unemployment rate for November decreased to 7.6 percent, down from the October revised rate of 8.2 percent, according to Karla Davis, the state's Commissioner of Labor & Workforce Development.
The national unemployment rate for November was 7.7 percent, 0.2 percentage point lower than the October rate.
Knox County had the state's lowest major metropolitan rate of 5.2 percent, down from 5.9 percent in October. Davidson County was 5.7 percent, down from 6.5 percent. Hamilton County was 6.4 percent, down from 7.3 percent, and Shelby County was 7.8 percent, down from 8.7 percent in October.
The state unemployment rate is seasonally adjusted while the county unemployment rates are not. Seasonal adjustment is a statistical technique that eliminates the influences of weather, holidays, the opening and closing of schools, and other recurring seasonal events from economic time series.
Davis also reported that Tennessee's November unemployment rate is the lowest rate since October 2008.
Over the past year, the state's jobless rate has declined from 8.7 percent to 7.6 percent (-1.1 percentage point) while the national rate declined from 8.7 percent to 7.7 percent (-1.0 percentage point).
Total nonfarm employment increased 3,600 jobs from October to November, with increases in trade/transportation/utilities and manufacturing. Also, total nonfarm employment increased 25,800 jobs from November 2011 to November 2012, with increases in manufacturing and education/health services.
However, declines occurred in financial activities and wholesale trade.