Thursday, May 23 2013 12:25 PM EDT2013-05-23 16:25:08 GMT
Army Specialist Ciara Smith surprised her son Devin Lewis and her mother Carla Williams today at Devin's Kindergarten graduation at Harper Elementary School in Thomasville. Smith just returned from herMore >>
Army Specialist Ciara Smith surprised her son Devin Lewis and her mother Carla Williams today at Devin's Kindergarten graduation at Harper Elementary School in Thomasville. More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 11:57 AM EDT2013-05-23 15:57:54 GMT
Thomasville-Thomas County Humane Society Volunteer Lacey Williams and WALB's Stephen Abel drew the winning raffle ticket late Wednesday afternoon for a $100 gas card donated by Harold Jackson and PetroleumMore >>
A group of volunteers raised a total of $640 by selling the raffle tickets. The money will be used to fight animal cruelty through education and awareness.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 10:01 AM EDT2013-05-23 14:01:10 GMT
Albany Engineer K. Bruce Maples, P. E. announced some road closures Thursday morning. Beginning at 6:00 A.M., Saturday, May 25, 2013, the following streets will be closed for the Spring Fest and SBMore >>
Albany Engineer K. Bruce Maples, announced some road closures beginning at 6:00 A.M., Saturday, May 25, 2013, in downtown Albany.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:00 AM EDT2013-05-23 13:00:09 GMT
ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Labor announced today that metro Albany's unemployment rate declined to 8.6 percent in April, down three-tenths of a percentage point from 8.9 percent in March. TheMore >>
The unemployment rate in the Southwest Georgia region declined to 8.2 percent in April, down two-tenths of a percentage point from 8.4 percent in March. The rate was 8.8 percent in April a year ago.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:30 AM EDT2013-05-23 11:30:38 GMT
Dougherty County Police believe a pair of convenience store smash and grabs may be the work of the same two men. The first smash and grab happened around 2:20 am at the Pit Stop convenience store atMore >>
Dougherty County Police believe two men are behind a smash and grab and a break in at two convenience stores within four miles of each other.More >>
By CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER AP Economics Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits rose last week, though the data was likely skewed higher by seasonal factors. Weekly applications increased by 8,000 to a seasonally adjusted 365,000, the Labor Department said Thursday.
The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell for the sixth straight week to 365,500, the lowest since March 31. The decline in the four-week average suggests the job market could be improving a bit.
But economists are viewing last month's figures with some caution because the government struggles every July to account for temporary summer shutdowns in the auto industry. This year was even more complicated because some automakers skipped shutdowns, resulting in fewer layoffs. A Labor Department spokesman said the latest figures should be the last affected by the auto shutdown issues. Weekly applications are a measure of layoffs. When they consistently fall below 375,000, it suggests hiring is strong enough to pull the unemployment rate down.
The seasonal distortions could affect the July employment report, which the Labor Department will release on Friday. Economists predict employers added 100,000 jobs last month. That would be slightly better than the 75,000 a month average from April through June but still below the healthy 226,000 average in the first three months of the year. The unemployment rate is expected to stay at 8.2 percent.
The economy isn't growing fast enough to lower the unemployment rate. Growth slowed to an annual rate of just 1.5 percent from April through June, down from a 2 percent rate in the first quarter and a 4.1 percent rate in the fourth quarter of 2011. The Federal Reserve cited the slowdown in growth after its two-day policy meeting, which concluded Wednesday.
While the Fed took no new action at the meeting, it appeared to signal a growing inclination to take further steps to lift the economy out of its slump. Consumers have grown more cautious about spending, a key reason growth faltered. Manufacturing shank in July for the second straight month, according to a survey by a trade group of purchasing managers. Europe's economic crisis, which has already dampened demand for U.S. exports, could slow manufacturing further.
Worries have also intensified the U.S. economy will fall off a "fiscal cliff" at the end of the year. That's when tax increases and deep spending cuts will take effect unless Congress reaches a budget deal. A recession could follow, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has warned. Many economists believe the Fed could launch another program of buying government bonds and mortgage-backed securities at its September meeting if the economy doesn't show improvement. The goal of the program, known as quantitative easing, would be to drive long-term rates, which are already at record lows, even lower.
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