The unemployment rate in Macon and Warner Robins rose slightly in December.
The preliminary unemployment rate in metro Macon was 9.2 percent in December, up from 8.7 percent in November, according to a news release from the Georgia Department of Labor.
The rate was 9.5 percent in December, 2011.
The rate rose because of a combination of factors -- a slight increase in new layoffs represented by initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits, a loss of jobs and a reduction in the labor force, the release stated.
The preliminary rate in Warner Robins was 7.4 percent in December, up from 7 percent in November, the release stated. The rate was also 7.4 percent in December 2011.
In Macon the number of jobs declined by 500 to 98,700, from 99,200 in November. The loss was mostly in service-related industries.
In Warner Robins, the number of jobs was down by 200 to 59,000, from 59,200 in November. The loss was mostly in service-related industries and local government.
Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 6.6 percent and the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest at 11.4 percent.
Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted.
To contact writer Linda S. Morris, call 744-4223.