For a second consecutive month, Scott County's unemployment rate was up sharply in January, jumping to 9.5 percent.

According to numbers released by the Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development, the local jobless rate was up a full percentage point from December's seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate of 8.5 percent.

Despite that negative news, the state's data showed that Scott County added a significant number of jobs in January. According to the report, there were 7,280 Scott Countians working in January, up 110 from December's total of 7,170.

The increase in the unemployment rate was seen as a number of new workers were added to the local work force. According to the state's data, Scott County's total civilian work force was estimated at 8,040 in January, up from 7,840 in December. The number of unemployed workers seeking employment was 760, up from 670 in December.

Despite the increased unemployment rate, Scott County's percentage of jobless workers did not increase as sharply as some counties in December, as the local unemployment rate slipped from the state's third-highest to its fifth-highest.

Lake County had the state's highest unemployment rate in January, at 11.3 percent, followed by Rhea County at 10.2 percent and Cocke County at 10.0 percent. Sevier County had an unemployment rate of 9.6 percent in January.

Behind Scott County were Jackson County, Lauderdale County, Hancock County and Houston County, all at 9.1 percent, and Wayne County at 9.0 percent.

Williamson County continued to show the way with the state's lowest unemployment rate, at 3.9 percent, followed by Davidson County at 4.1 percent and Rutherford County at 4.3 percent. Wilson County, at 4.4 percent, and Sumner County, at 4.5 percent, rounded out the state's five lowest unemployment rates. They were followed by Maury and Knox counties, at 4.7 percent, and Cheatham, Robertson and Moore counties, at 4.8 percent.

Among the state's major metropolitan area, Nashville had the lowest unemployment rate, at 4.3 percent, followed by Knoxville at 5.4 percent and Chattanooga at 5.6 percent. Memphis posted a January unemployment rate of 6.0 percent.

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