Iberville jobless rate hits 6.8 percent

Deidre Cruse

Iberville Parish’s unemployment rate reached 6.8 percent in August, topping both the state and national rates, according to the latest report from the Louisiana Workforce Commission (formerly the state Department of Labor).

The jobless rate was have a percentage point higher than local rate of 6.3 percent in July and more than a point higher than the 5.7 percent rate of August 2007.

Iberville’s August rate was higher than the 6.1 percent national unemployment rate. According to the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., the national rate represents a five-year high and denotes the loss of 600,000 jobs since December.

The local rate was nearly two points higher than the five percent posted for the state and for the nine-parish Baton Rouge Metropolitan Statistical Area of which Iberville is a part. Among the Baton Rouge area parishes, only St. Helena had a higher rate, at 9.4 percent, while Ascension Parish posted the lowest rate, at 4.6 percent.

Statewide, Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes had the lowest unemployment rates, at 3.2 percent, while East Carroll Parish posted the highest, at 11.6 percent.

In August, Iberville had 11,697 employed workers and 858 without jobs. That is compared to 11,726 employed and 789 unemployed in July, and to 11,573 employed and 698 unemployed in August 2007.