- Associated Press - Thursday, January 23, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia’s unemployment rate has dropped to 7.4 percent in December amid strong job growth in the state.

The Georgia Department of Labor announced the new seasonally adjusted jobless rate on Thursday.

Georgia had 90,000 more jobs in December than it did at that point a year ago, State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said. Seasonal hiring helped to fuel that growth, he said.

“The rate dropped primarily because 4,020 more Georgians were employed in December, mostly due to seasonal hiring in retail trade, transportation and warehousing,” Butler said in a statement. “And, I’m particularly pleased that we had some 90,000 more jobs this December than last, which is the best December job growth in eight years.”

The December jobless rate was down two-tenths of a percentage point from November’s revised 7.6 percent rate and well under the 8.7 percent rate in December 2012.

Georgia had 4,094 million jobs in December, an increase of 90,100 jobs, or 2.3 percent, since December 2012, officials said.