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North Carolina Department of Commerce

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North Carolina’s October County and Area Employment Figures Released

Date: 11/30/2017

Contact: David Rhoades
Phone: 919 814-4611

* press release includes an attachment *

Raleigh, N.C. — Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in 93 of North Carolina’s counties in October and remained unchanged in seven.  Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 7.2 percent, while Buncombe County had the lowest at 3.1 percent.  All 15 of the state’s metro areas experienced rate increases.  Among the metro areas, Rocky Mount at 6.0 percent had the highest rate and Asheville had the lowest rate at 3.3 percent.  The October not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 4.1 percent. 

  Counties With Rates
5% or Below
Counties With Rates
Between 5% and 10%
Counties With Rates
10% or Above
October 78 22 0
September (Revised) 83 17 0

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates decreased all 100 counties.  All 15 metro areas experienced rate decreases over the year.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in October by 19,213 to 4,751,139, while those unemployed increased 7,987 to 204,020. Since October 2016, the number of workers employed statewide increased 74,326, while those unemployed decreased 47,192.

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, December 22, 2017 when the state unemployment rate for November 2017 will be released.

This information may be accessed on the Commerce website at


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