TN Unemployment Rate Is 2 Percent Lower Than 2016

Tennessee’s Rate Remains One Percentage Point Lower than National Average

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and Department of Labor and Workforce Develop-ment Commissioner Burns Phillips announced last week that the November statewide unemployment rate posted significantly lower than November 2016 and notably lower than the national average.

The preliminary, seasonally adjusted state-wide unemployment rate for November 2017 was 3.1 percent – two percentage points lower than it was one year ago and one percentage point below the national average of 4.1.

While the November statewide rate slightly increased 0.1 percent from the previous month, unemployment in Tennessee remains historically low. The state unemployment rate reached 3 percent in both September and October, its lowest level since the federal government began tracking the statistic in 1976.

“We’ve invested in our workforce through educational programs like Tennessee Reconnect and Tennessee Promise to help citizens prepare for the job demands of today’s employers. But we’ve also focused on creating an environment in Tennessee where businesses can thrive and want to invest in our communities and citizens,” Haslam said. “Jobs are created when companies put capital at risk, and our unemployment rate figures reflect that our policies are attracting companies to Tennessee.”   

Total nonfarm employ-ment in Tennessee grew by 1,800 jobs in November.  The state’s leisure and hospitality industry saw the biggest gains between October and November.

“Heading into the holidays, more Tennesseans have jobs this year, compared to last year,” Phillips said.  “That’s good, not only for each individual family, but also for Tennessee’s economy as a whole.”

Tennessee first marked a historic low unemployment rate in June at 3.6 percent, which was bested by the July rate of 3.4 percent, and then fell even lower in August to 3.3 percent. It hit a new historic low of 3 percent in both September and October. November’s rate is the third lowest in the last six months.  More information on the unemployment rate, labor force and resources to help Tennesseans find jobs is available on

The county unemploy-ment rates for November 2017 will be published on Thursday, December 28, at 1:30 p.m. CT.