State’s unemployment rate keeps falling

Published 6:21 pm Thursday, February 3, 2022

Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in 91 of North Carolina’s counties in December, increased in four, and remained unchanged in five. Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 6.9 percent while Orange County had the lowest at 2.2 percent. All fifteen of the state’s metro areas experienced rate decreases. Among the metro areas, Rocky Mount had the highest rate at 5.0 percent while Durham-Chapel Hill had the lowest at 2.5 percent. The December not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 3.2 percent.

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates decreased in all 100 counties. All 15 of the state’s metro areas experienced rate decreases over the year.

Beaufort County’s unemployment rate in December was 3.2%; it was just under 6% a year earlier. The number of people employed in the county was 19,938, and 640 people were unemployed.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in December by 13,301 to 4,909,662, while those unemployed decreased by 9,893 to 160,692. Since December 2020, the number of workers employed statewide increased 199,479, while those unemployed decreased 146,441.

It is important to note that employment estimates are subject to large seasonal patterns; therefore, it is advisable to focus on over-the-year changes in the not seasonally adjusted estimates.

The next unemployment update is scheduled for Monday, March 14, 2022 when the state unemployment rate for January 2022 will be released.