Jobless rate ticks up in May across NC
Posted June 20
Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina's unemployment rate bumped above the national average in May for the first time in four months.
Statewide, 6.4 percent of the workforce was looking for jobs in May, up from 6.2 percent in April, according to data released Friday by the state Department of Commerce. Nationwide, the jobless rate was 6.3 percent both months.
The state rate had fallen for 10 straight months before the uptick in May. A year ago, North Carolina's unemployment rate was 8.3 percent.
The number of people employed statewide increased 10,187 in May, to 4,397,574, which was 81,992 more than May 2013. The number of people unemployed increased 8,795 during the month, to 300,917, which was 90,299 fewer than a year ago.
The state's labor force in May was 4,698,491, up nearly 19,000 since April. The labor force – the total number of people eligible to work – is down only 8,300 since May 2013. The slowing decline in the labor force – the April-to-April numbers showed a drop of 33,000 – might indicate the exodus of the long-term unemployed from the workforce – once you stop looking for work, you're no longer counted in the unemployment rate – may be coming to an end.
Leisure and hospitality services; trade, transportation and utilities; and education and health services saw big increases in May, while professional and business services and the government sectors recorded the largest decreases in employment.