Unemployment increased in 210 U.S. metro areas in May due in part to Mother Nature
Unemployment rates rose across the country thanks to natural disasters and weak private sector hirings.
Although unemployment rates dropped in April, unforeseen factors like tornadoes in Alabama stymied growth, moving the unemployment rate to 9.1% while employers added just 54,000 net jobs.
While some critics will ask both political parties about where the jobs are, some of the reasons for the increase in unemployment in May can be attributed to the Japanese tsunami in March due to the lack of Japanese auto parts that U.S. automakers need to make new vehicles.
Toyota, Ford Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co. and Chrysler were all forced to shut down either some or all of their North American factories because of the parts shortage, according to the Associated Press. Factory towns in South Carolina, Louisiana, as well as manufactoring communities in Detroit, Ann Arbor and Battle Creek, Mich., also saw large unemployment increases last month.
Tuscaloosa, Ala., where a deadly tornado killed 41 people in late April saw its unemployment rate rise from 8.1% in April to 9.3% in May.
-- Tony Pierce
Andrew Malcolm is on vacation
Photo: President Obama tours "heartbreaking" devastation in April left by tornadoes and storms that killed more than 300 people. Credit: Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images.