Employment in Atlanta saw slight improvement year-over-year this summer, but the rising cost of goods may distract from any positive change.

According to an economic summary from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Atlanta’s price increases are outweighing increases in the number of jobs and monthly wages, remaining relatively on par with national findings.

The national unemployment rate remained stagnant from July 2022 to July of this year, weighing in at 3.8%. However, rates across the four key counties comprising the metro Atlanta area — Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb and Gwinnett — each rose 0.1-0.2% across the 12-month period, with the Atlanta area average increasing from 3% to 3.2% year-over-year. 

In contrast, employment saw a 1.7% change in nonfarm payrolls in Atlanta, with related industries seeing approximately 3 million jobs total in 2023, adding roughly 52,000 jobs since July of 2022.

Wages for existing jobs haven’t witnessed significant growth either. Average weekly earnings for Atlantans rose from $1,129.88 as measured in 2022 to $1,164.53 as measured this past summer, amounting to a 3.1% increase for the metro area overall.

Prices for goods, on the other hand, have increased nearly 5% in Atlanta from June 2022 to June 2023, compared to a 3% increase measured nationwide. Food costs specifically witnessed an even greater spike over the 12-month span, with prices increasing 7.7% and 5.7%, respectively.