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Originally published: 2013-12-23 14:55:06
Last modified: 2013-12-23 14:55:52

NC jobless rate dips to 7.4 percent

by Anna Oakes

Following a downward trend nationwide, North Carolina's unemployment rate declined to 7.4 percent in November, according to data released by the N.C. Department of Commerce Friday.

The rate is down from 8 percent in October this year and two percentage points lower than November 2012, when the rate was 9.4 percent.

Gov. Pat McCrory's office released a statement Friday following the rate announcement, noting the 7.4 percent figure is the lowest state jobless rate in more than five years.

"We are confident the policies enacted in the past year have yielded a positive impact, but much more innovation and change is needed to continue putting North Carolinians back to work," McCrory said. "We are thankful that new businesses are investing in North Carolina, but just as thankful that existing businesses are feeling the confidence to reinvest in our great state as well."

Seasonally adjusted total nonfarm industry employment, as gathered through the monthly establishment survey, decreased 6,500 to 4,084,100 in November. The major industry with the largest over-the-month increase was trade, transportation and utilities at 2,600; followed by professional and business services, 2,000; construction, 1,600; and leisure and hospitality services, 300.

Major industries to experience decreases were education and health services, 4,100; manufacturing, 3,300; financial activities, 2,500; government, 1,500; other services, 1,000; and information, 600. Mining and logging employment remained flat over the month.

The county unemployment rates for November will be released Jan. 7.

In October, the Watauga County jobless rate was 6.3 percent, while its neighbors were at 7.8 percent in Avery County, 8.3 percent in Caldwell, 8.5 percent in Wilkes and 8.7 percent in Ashe.

For more information about job statistics and finding a job, visit or call the local Employment Security Commission office at (828) 265-5385.