TEMPLE — Bell County’s unemployment rate increased from 5.4 percent in April to 5.8 percent in May, according to Texas Workforce Commission figures released Friday. The slight increase in the unemployment rate translated to 652 new jobless claims throughout the county.
The Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood metropolitan statistical area unemployment came in at 5.9 percent in May, an increase of 0.4 percent from April, which led to 777 new jobless claims in the area. The actual number of unemployed individuals in the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood area rose from 9,394 in April to 10,171 in May.
The discrepancy between Bell County’s unemployment numbers and the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood MSA’s unemployment number may be explained by the fact that the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood area includes Coryell and Lampasas counties.
Despite the increase, both Bell County and the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood rates remain down from last year. In May 2013, Bell County’s unemployment rate was 6.9 percent while the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood area was 7.1 percent.
Statewide, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 5.1 percent in May, down from 5.2 percent in April.
The Midland MSA had the lowest May unemployment rate in the state at 2.6 percent while the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission MSA had the highest with 8.6 percent.
The Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos MSA posted a 4.1 percent unemployment rate last month while the Waco area had a 5 percent unemployment rate.
The Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington metro area unemployment rate grew from 4.7 percent in April to 5 percent in May.