Virginia’s jobless rate falls to lowest level in 17 years
Virginia’s unemployment fell to 2.8 percent in November, its lowest level in more than 17 years.
The November jobless figure represents a decline of one-tenth of a percentage point from 2.9 percent in October.
The latest unemployment rate also is eight-tenths of a percentage point below the 3.6 percent rate recorded in November 2017.
The jobless numbers are based on seasonally adjusted data, meaning they take into account seasonal fluctuations in the labor market.
In a statement, Gov. Ralph Northam said that the 2.8 percent rate was evidence that the commonwealth has “made great strides” in putting people to work while attracting more businesses and capital investment.
The governor, however, used the opportunity to tout his budget proposals for more investment in education, workforce training, health care, affordable housing and broadband infrastructure.
“While this news is a positive indicator that Virginia’s economy is strong, we must keep our focus on driving opportunity to all corners of this Commonwealth so everyone can participate our shared success,” he said.
November’s 2.8 percent rate is the lowest seen in Virginia since April 2001. The U.S. unemployment rate for November was 3.7 percent.
Virginia’s November rate was ranked as the sixth lowest in the nation along with Minnesota, Nebraska, and North Dakota.
The commonwealth’s rate also the lowest among Southeastern states and the third best rate among the states east of the Mississippi.
In November, Virginia’s private sector recorded an over-the-year gain of 91,200 jobs, while employment in the public sector declined by 16,100 jobs.
Virginia’s nonfarm employment increased by 6,600 jobs in November to 4.03 million, the 11th consecutive monthly increase and a new record high.