Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina's labor force shrank by more than 10,000 people from May to June, according to figures released Friday by the state Department of Commerce.
Coupled with a small increase in the number of people unemployed, the state's unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.8 percent.
More than 416,700 people in the state remain unemployed, up 596 from May, and the state's labor force shrank by 10,362, to 4,709,264. The number of people employed fell by 10,958, to 4,292,497.
The jobs and labor force numbers released Friday are factors in the calculation of the statewide unemployment rate, which was also 8.8 percent in May.
North Carolina has has the country’s fifth-highest unemployment rate, behind Nevada, Illinois, Mississippi and Rhode Island.
Despite the flat unemployment rate and decrease in the state's labor force, the state added about 5,700 non-farm jobs from May to June. Manufacturing, education and health services, leisure and hospitality services and government were the only major industries to record job losses in the month.
June's unemployment rate is down about eight tenths in the last year. The June 2012 unemployment rate was 9.6 percent, and in that month, more than 450,000 people were unemployed.
The national unemployment rate held steady in June, remaining at 7.6 percent because more people started looking for jobs.