Tennessee Unemployment Levels Continue to Decline, Drop to Pre-Pandemic Level


Tennessee’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic continues to improve, as unemployment numbers have decreased for the sixth consecutive month.

According to data released by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD), the unemployment numbers have dropped to pre-pandemic levels.

The latest numbers revealed that the state maintained a 4 percent unemployment rate in November, a .2 percent decrease from October. Furthermore, the numbers are a 1.6 percent drop from November 2020. During April 2020, the state witnessed its highest unemployment rate in history, as the economic shutdowns spiked and at least 15.8 percent of Tennesseans could not find a job.

In an effort to assist the state’s residents in securing a job, TDLWD developed a comprehensive website to search open positions, and it currently contains more than 400,000 openings.

“Thanks to the hard work & resilience of Tennesseans, our state’s strong economic recovery has accelerated back to pre-pandemic levels for unemployment & GDP,” tweeted Governor Bill Lee.

“This significant milestone is a testament to our fiscally responsible approach & commitment to meaningful work. While we continue strengthening our workforce, TN families & businesses will enter the New Year in a new, hopeful chapter for our state’s economy,” he added.

Earlier this year, when unemployment numbers remained consistent, Lee elected to opt out of additional federally-funded unemployment compensation. The funds paid individuals hundreds of extra dollars each month while the economy began to recover.

Lee and other opponents to the program argued that the added funds incentivized individuals to not secure employment.

“We will no longer participate in the federal pandemic unemployment programs because Tennesseans have access to more than 250,000 jobs in our state. Families, businesses & our economy thrive when we focus on meaningful employment & move on from short-term, federal fixes,” Lee said at the time.

— — —

Cooper Moran is a reporter for The Star News Network. Follow Cooper on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected]





Related posts

5 Thoughts to “Tennessee Unemployment Levels Continue to Decline, Drop to Pre-Pandemic Level”

  1. LM

    Am I the only one who thinks the unemployment rate is dropping because so many people have quit/are walking away from their jobs?? Businesses can’t find help. Restaurants are closing. Is it just me, or does somebody have no idea that there may be a huge disconnect between the “unemployment” percentage and the economic recovery?- Because the unemployment rate is artificial- people don’t consider themselves unemployed because they are no longer looking for jobs?

    1. 83ragtop50

      LM – Not sure that there is a definitive answer to the question you raise, but I am confident that ending the insane unemployment payments has resulted in folks taking a hard look at how they want to live their lives. Does a previously working Mom want to go back to work and net 30% of her salary after paying for childcare, transportation, meals out, clothing, etc.? I figure some will decide that being a stay-at-home Mom is much more beneficial to their family than a few extra bucks to spend. And, of course, there are those lowlifes who will figure out how to live off of welfare stolen from working people who actually work and earn a living.

  2. william r. delzell

    What type of jobs does Tennessee offer? Mainly low-paying few-benefit jobs with unsafe working conditions and a hostile working environment!

    1. 83ragtop50

      William – If that is truly the case, which I question, then all those wanting higher pay can move to blue states such as New York, New Jersey or California where the pay is 50% higher and the cost of living is 60% higher.

  3. Percentages mean nothing. The real question remains: Are the numbers down because more people are employed, or is it due to a huge number of people leaving the job market and not looking for work. Big difference.