The number of Columbus-area workers filing initial unemployment claims rose nearly 26 percent in April, the Georgia Department of Labor reported today.
There were 764 first-time claims submitted to the agency, up from 608 claims in March.
The highest percentage increases for April came in Warner Robins (56 percent), Macon (51 percent) and Brunswick (40 percent).
The department considers initial claims to be a solid economic barometer because they are a current measure of workers who have lost their jobs.
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Statewide, 51,604 workers filed first-time claims in April for unemployment insurance benefits after being laid off. That's a 21 percent increase from March.
Manufacturing, construction, trade and services all were impacted, the Labor Department said.
The only metro areas in the state to see declines in claims are Augusta and Valdosta.