Alabama is seeing a marginal uptick in its jobless rate.
The latest preliminary January unemployment rate for Alabama falls at 6.9%, slightly up from December's revised unemployment rate of 6.8%.
The last three consecutive months the state's jobless rate has remained below 7%.
However, Birmingham Business Alliance Senior Vice President of Economic Development, Rick Davis says he expects the state's current unemployment rate to drop.
"I won't say that were excited because the economy is growing far to slow for most of us, but we're encouraged by what we've seen that is the numbers are starting to trend down," said Davis.
A trend Davis says is positive, though, hiring is lacking despite recent years of growth for companies.
"We're starting to see some areas where there is some certainty and companies are starting to look at things like, okay we're not going to grow as fast as we once did, but we are going to grow," Davis said.
Over the the last 12 months the Alabama Labor Department has seen gains in manufacturing, professional and business services, as well as educational and health services.
"The long-term trend in Alabama's unemployment rate is encouraging new," Governor Robert Bentley said.
Counties with lowest and highest jobless rate are Shelby at 5.4% and Wilcox at 17.4%.