North Carolina jobless numbers holding steady

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Coastal Rivers Realty

By Tom Marine
The Daily Reflector

Friday, October 17, 2008

North Carolina's unemployment rate held steady during September despite turmoil on Wall Street and an increasingly tight job market.

Even though national employment dropped 222,000 jobs last month, the state showed an employment increase of about 6,600, according to the Employment Security Commission of North Carolina. The unemployment rate did rise to 7.0 percent, up from 6.9 percent in August, due to more than 10,000 workers entering the state's labor force.

"There is no doubt that national trends have hurt our state's economy," said ESC Chairman Harry E. Payne Jr. "We are encouraged by our second employment gain in the last three months, but the job market in North Carolina remains tight."

If unemployment remains stable, it will end a 12-month trend of rising rates. Since September 2007, unemployment in North Carolina has grown 2.3 percent, meaning roughly 100,000 more laborers are out of work compared to last year.

The unemployment numbers for Pitt County and the Greenville Metropolitan Statistical Area - the region encompassing Pitt and Greene County - were to be released Friday.

Historically, unemployment has fallen during September in both the Greenville MSA and Pitt County, including the last nine years.

The civilian labor force in Greenville has experienced significant spikes in unemployment recently, even reaching its highest level in nearly twenty years during July. The rate did decrease in August; however, local unemployment was still higher than both the state and national rates.

The industries providing the largest increase in employment statewide were educational and health services, adding about 1,600 new workers. Conversely, government and manufacturing experienced the largest drop in jobs, cutting 3,900 and 3,500 respectively.


Contact Tom Marine at or (252) 329-9567