Virginia’s unemployment rate drops to 2.6%
Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 2.6% in October, down 0.1% from September, Gov. Ralph Northam announced on Tuesday.
The national unemployment rate for October was 3.6%, up 0.1% from September. The commonwealth’s labor force expanded for the 16th consecutive month in October by 13,547 workers, or 0.3%, to set a new record of nearly 4.43 million workers. The number of unemployed Virginia residents decreased by 2,368. Household employment in Virginia set a new high of more than 4.3 million workers.
Virginia is ranked fourth in the nation for the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate, behind Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, and has the lowest seasonally adjusted unemployment rate among the Southeast states. Over-the-year employment growth in Virginia has been positive for 67 consecutive months.
“The competition for talent is on, because low unemployment gives workers more options about where to work,” Northam said in a statement. “Next month, we will put forward a budget that continues investing in workforce development to ensure long-term, shared economic growth in our commonwealth.”
In October, the private sector recorded an over-the-year gain of 32,400 jobs, while the public sector decreased by 2,800 jobs. Eight of the eleven major industry divisions experienced employment gains, while the other three experienced employment losses, as compared to a year ago on a seasonally adjusted basis.