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UnemploymentRALEIGH —Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in 98 of North Carolina’s counties in May and remained unchanged in two.  Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 8.6 percent, while Buncombe County had the lowest at 3.5 percent.  Fourteen of the state’s metro areas experienced rate decreases and one remained unchanged. Among the Metro areas, Rocky Mount at 6.9 percent experienced the highest rate and Asheville had the lowest rate at 3.7 percent.  The May not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 4.7 percent.


Counties With Rates Counties With Rates Counties With Rates 5% or Below Between 5% and 10% 10% or Above May 55 45 0 April (Revised) 39 61 0 

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

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in May by 13,221 to 4,626,542 while those unemployed decreased 12,386 to 229,979.  Since May 2015, the number of workers employed statewide increased 88,625, while those unemployed decreased 60,005. 

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 Friday, July 22, 2016 when the state unemployment rate for June 2016 will be released. 

Some area May unemployment rates: Brunswick 5.5, Columbus 5.9, Cumberland 5.9, Duplin 5.0, New Hanover 4.3, Onslow 5.1, Pender 4.3, Robeson 6.8, Sampson 4.8.

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