NC employers add thousands of jobs in April; unemployment rate falls
Posted May 16, 2014
Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina's unemployment rate fell for the 10th straight month in April, and employers in the state added more than 15,000 jobs, according to data released Friday by the state Department of Commerce.
The state's unemployment rate dipped to 6.2 percent, which is down 2.2 percentage points since April 2013. It remains better than the national unemployment rate, which was 6.3 percent in April.
The state's labor force in April was 4,678,398, up nearly 10,000 since March. The labor force – or the total number of people eligible to work – is down more than 33,000 since April 2013, evidence that many people, some of them the long-term unemployed, are dropping out of the job market and are no longer counted in the unemployment rate calculation.
The number of people employed was up more than 14,000 in April, from 4,373,014 in March to 4,387,118. Nearly 70,000 more people are listed as employed than in April 2013.
The number of people unemployed – those who are looking for jobs – fell by 4,193, from 295,473 in March to 291,280 in April.
Gov. Pat McCrory said Friday that the continuing decline of the unemployment rate is a good sign for North Carolina's economy.
"We continue to see encouraging signs in North Carolina's economy with each month that passes," he said in a statement. "We have made a lot of progress over the past year, but there is still a lot of work to be done."
Rep. Thom Tillis also released a statement praising the changes in North Carolina's economy.
"It's no coincidence given our tax, regulatory and unemployment reform that we continue to see a significant drop in unemployment and are able to add jobs for our citizens," Tillis said in a statement. "I will work on legislation during this short session that will keep improving our economy and placing North Carolinians in good jobs."
A survey calculating nonfarm payrolls recorded 15,300 more jobs in the month of April.
Leisure and hospital services, professional and business services and manufacturing sectors saw big increases in the month, while government, education and health services, construction and mining and logging recorded decreases.
Average hourly wages for manufacturing production workers fell 7 cents in April, from $16.75 an hour to $16.68 an hour.
The food industry remains North Carolina's leading sector in manufacturing employment at 51,400.