Jobless rates increase in most Albemarle counties

Statewide map of jobless rates for June 2018_edited.jpg

Shown here is North Carolina's jobless rates by counties for June.


By William F. West
Staff Writer

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Unemployment rates increased in June in all but three of North Carolina's 100 counties, and most of the Albemarle region was no exception.

Perquimans County posted a 5.1 percent jobless rate and Pasquotank County was just behind at 5 percent, according to recently released data from the N.C. Department of Commerce. Both Perquimans and Pasquotank experienced a six-tenths of a percent uptick in rates compared to the May figures.

Statewide, the jobless rate for June was 4.2 percent, also was a five-tenths of a percent increase.

Elsewhere in the Albemarle, Chowan County posted a 4.8 percent jobless rate, a six-tenths of a percent increase compared to May.

Gates County posted a 4.4 percent rate, which was a sixth-tenths of a percent increase.

Only three other counties in the Albemarle posted rates below the statewide average.

Camden County's rate for June was 4.1 percent, a six-tenths of a percent increase compared to May.

Currituck County's rate for June was 3.7 percent, a three-tenths of a percent increase.

Dare was one of the three North Carolina counties to experience a decrease in jobless rates in June. Dare posted a 3.9 percent rate, which was down three-tenths of a percent compared to May.

Statewide, the data continued to show counties with the lowest jobless rates can be found in parts of the western part of the state and in the Research Triangle region.

Buncombe County posted the state’s lowest jobless rate, at 3.2 percent.

The data also continued to show a pattern of counties along or east of Interstate 95 with high jobless rates, namely Edgecombe, Halifax, Hyde, Robeson and Wilson.

Despite the gaps by region, Commerce officials said the job growth rate, after weakening somewhat in 2017, has increased each of the past seven months. Unemployment continues to drop, as shown by initial unemployment insurance claims being just above the record low, officials reported.

They also said manufacturing hours, which are at a 39-month high, symbolizes prosperity in that sector.

They said one of the few soft spots is in housing, where, following a national trend, the number of seasonally adjusted permits in North Carolina declined for the fifth straight month. The housing data is worth monitoring, officials said, because of a possible impact on future employment in construction.