RALEIGH — Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in 76 of North Carolina’s counties in November, decreased in six, and remained unchanged in 18. Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 10.5 percent while Watauga County had the lowest at 4.2 percent. Ten of the state’s metro areas experienced rate increases, one decreased, and four remained unchanged. Among the metro areas, Fayetteville had the highest rate at 8.4 percent while Durham-Chapel Hill had the lowest at 5.2 percent. The November not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 6.2 percent.

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates increased in 99 counties and decreased in one. All 15 of the state’s metro areas experienced rate increases over the year.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in November by 8,578 to 4,665,264, while those unemployed increased by 4,704 to 301,765. Since November 2019, the number of workers employed statewide decreased 257,673, while those unemployed increased 123,934.

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.

Avery County’s unemployment rate for November was 5.0 percent, an increase of 0.4 percent from the previous month and ranking 12th-lowest statewide. Caldwell had the highest unemployment of bordering counties at 6.6 percent (24th highest in North Carolina), with 5.8 percent in Burke County.

Avery: 5.0 percent

Ashe: 4.9 percent

Burke: 5.8 percent

McDowell: 5.6 percent

Mitchell: 6.3 percent

Watauga: 4.2 percent

Yancey: 5.2 percent

North Carolina experienced a statewide rate of 6.2 percent for November, a 0.1-percent increase from the previous month. Among neighboring states, North Carolina and West Virginia each had the highest state unemployment rate for November at 6.2 percent. Alabama and South Carolina shared the lowest unemployment rate out of neighboring states at 4.4 percent.

North Carolina: 6.2 percent

Georgia: 5.7 percent

South Carolina: 4.4 percent

Tennessee: 5.3 percent

Virginia: 4.9 percent

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates in November in Avery increased by 1.7 percent. The statewide labor force employed totaled 4,370,500, an increase of more than 16,500 than a month earlier, with a total of 301,765 unemployed in North Carolina.

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.

All figures courtesy North Carolina Department of Commerce and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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