Triangle jobless rate surges to 8.5 percent in June

Posted July 29, 2011

The loss of 4,600 government jobs helped drive the Triangle’s unemployment rate up nearly a full percentage point to 8.5 percent in June. That's the highest rate since July of last year.

The grim news comes from the latest jobless report from the North Carolina Employment Security Commission on Friday.

Triangle metro unemployment was 7.8 percent in May. A year ago the rate was 8.7 percent. 

The seasonally adjusted rate as provided by East Carolina University for June was 7.8 percent, up from 7.6 percent in May. Economists consider seasonally adjusted numbers based on such things as weather and seasonal employment as a more accurate barometer of the labor situation. A year ago the seasonally adjusted rate for the Triangle was 8.1 percent.

Losses in the public sector were especially heavy in Durham-Chapel Hill, which shed 3,200 government positions. That was a 5.6 percent jump from the previous month.

Government jobs declined by 1,400 in Raleigh-Cary, a 1.5 percent increase.

Statewide unemployment is 9.9 percent. The national rate is 9.2 percent.

The ESC said it was still checking to see just how many of the job losses were due to state budget cutbacks and typical reductions at schools and universities for the summer.

“We are seeing a larger number than we typically see at this time of year,” said ESC spokesperson Larry Parker.” That will take some time” to determine what impact budget cuts are having.

The number of people working in Raleigh-Cary actually increased by 500.

However, the number of initial claims for unemployment grew to 3,546 in June from 3,322 in May.

As more people seek employment and are counted again as part of the total work force, the unemployment rate can increase even if more people have jobs. The unemployment rate is calculated on the number of people working, reciving unemployment benefits and seeking work.

Unemployment in the Rocky Mount metro area is the state’s worst at 13.7 percent.

Despite the increase, Durham-Chapel Hill has the lowest metro area jobless rate.

Fayetteville’s jobless rate was 10.1 percent; in Goldsboro, 9.2 percent; and in Greenville 10.8 percent.


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • TheAdmiral Aug 3, 2011

    For some reason, I can never understand why in those metro areas where there are military bases why the unemployment rate is always higher than in other areas of the country.

  • Bill Brasky Jul 29, 2011

    "Isn't our government as guilty of that (via lobbyists and special interest groups pandering to our politicians) as anyone or anything in this country?"

    Who else is going to watch over the industries..Superman? Government is our only choice. That's why I support term limits, and getting lobbysts out of our government. I'd like the government to get back to the way it was meant to be government of the people, by the people.

  • Bill Brasky Jul 29, 2011


    Great post. You said it better then I did.

  • Bill Brasky Jul 29, 2011

    "If that were so, there would be few unemployed since 2008, only the more recent layoffs would be drawing unemployment."

    It's so, according to the definition of recession.

  • miseem Jul 29, 2011

    Another basic fact is that laying off a lot of workers in government will not improve the economy. Should we have let GM & Chrysler fail? They have returned to profitability and are employing tens of thousands of workers, and tens of thousands of supplier. Not to mention the diners, grocers, WalMart, etc they shop at. Same with public sector employees. Listening to the tea party, you'd think most of them sit around a campfire made of $100 bills, singing Kumbayah all day. In fact, they provide jobs for many industries, fund research that private companies would not do without government support, provide educational services, law enforcement and fire protection, medical care, national defense, protection of resources and dozens of other jobs that benefit the public, usually at no charge to the public. The last I heard, these same government workers paid privately owned stores, utilities, landlords or mortgage companies, invested in privately retirement funds, paid college tuition.

  • RB aka Spirit Warrior Woman Jul 29, 2011

    Brasky - "You do realize the recession ended on the 3rd quarter of 2009!..LOL"

    If that were so, there would be few unemployed since 2008, only the more recent layoffs would be drawing unemployment.

    But the truth of that is, for those over the age of 40, because employers are discriminating against age - (according to representatives of the NCESC) there are NO jobs because employers can get kids right out of college for a penury over those with proven skills and experience, and THAT is something the government should do something about - because age discrimination is against the law.

  • miseem Jul 29, 2011

    I'd like to hear exactly what the tea party wants to cut, besides the EPA and Planned Parenthood. I'm sure no one would mind going back to the 1960's, when rivers were so polluted they caught on fire or had no fish in them. Fish are raised on "farms" now. Since no one uses a clothes line, you don't have the problem of deciding when to hang clothes to dry based on when the wind blew smokestack soot downwind. Everyone knows that the best way to cut down on unplanned pregnancies, especially among the poor and uninsured, is to cut funding for Planned Parenthood, who cannot spend a dime for government money for abortions. Of course, we can drop the FDA - who needs them when so many of the public today are buying into the snake oil salesmen of the Tea Party? Maybe drop the SEC? They won't be much good after the economy crashes because we won't pay debts we've already incurred.

  • Bill Brasky Jul 29, 2011

    "Haven't Perdue and Obama and their ilk been telling us the recession is over???"

    Not just them but the US Department of Commerce has as well.

  • Nancy Jul 29, 2011

    "The loss of 4,600 government jobs helped drive the Triangle’s unemployment rate up nearly a full percentage point to 8.5 percent in June."

    What? You mean all 4,600 came from the Triangle, all those government employees all worked in this area?

    No wonder we have a budget problem.

  • Bill Brasky Jul 29, 2011

    Jobs do not get created from lowering taxes on corporations..not sure why I have to explain this all the time. It's simple economics. You raise the demand for something...then jobs get created.

    I'll support the party that can strengthen the middle class. The middle class is the the largest class in America and consists rougly 202,000,000 Americans. You give them more money in tax breaks and they will purchase goods and services, which raises demand. Then watch the economy skyrocket. This will benefit the lower class(workers) and upper class(business owners) of America as well.