MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WTVY) — Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington announced today that Alabama’s unemployment compensation initial claims are their lowest level in 44 years. In 2017, 147,775 initial claims were filed. The last time initial claims were near this level was in 1973, when they measured 148,540.
“We’ve been announcing good news for the past several months related to our unemployment rate,” said Washington. “The fact that fewer people are filing unemployment compensation claims is at a near record low goes hand-in-hand with our declining unemployment rate. A lower rate, more people working, and fewer claims all point to one thing: Alabamians are working.”
Initial claims are first-time applications for unemployment compensation benefits from those who have lost their jobs.
Additionally, the number of weeks compensated, (the total number of weeks the state of Alabama paid unemployment compensation benefits to the jobless), also decreased to 739,841. The last time weeks compensated measured at or below that level was in 1973, when it measured 732,368.
Alabama’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate currently sits at 3.5% (December 2017), the lowest in history.