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North Carolina Department of Commerce

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Press Releases


North Carolina’s August County and Area Employment Figures Released

Date: 9/27/2017

Contact: David Rhoades
Phone: 919 814-4611

* press release includes an attachment *

Raleigh, N.C. — Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in 26 of North Carolina’s counties in August, decreased in 25, and remained unchanged in 49.  Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 7.7 percent, while Buncombe County had the lowest at 3.4 percent.  One of the state’s metro areas experienced a rate increase, three experienced decreases, and 11 remained unchanged. Among the metro areas, Rocky Mount at 6.6 percent had the highest rate and Asheville had the lowest rate at 3.7 percent.  The August not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 4.5 percent. 

  Counties With Rates
5% or Below
Counties With Rates
Between 5% and 10%
Counties With Rates
10% or Above
August 70 30 0
July (Revised) 68 32 0

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates decreased all 100 counties.  All fifteen metro areas experienced rate decreases over the year.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in August by 49,310 to 4,685,972, while those unemployed decreased 2,281 to 218,650. Since August 2016, the number of workers employed statewide increased 74,052, while those unemployed decreased 36,937.

It is important to note that employment estimates are subject to large seasonal patterns; therefore, it is advisable to focus on over-the-year changes in the not seasonally adjusted estimates.

The next unemployment update is scheduled for Friday, October 20, 2017 when the state unemployment rate for September 2017 will be released. 

This information may be accessed on the Commerce website at


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