Polk’s unemployment rate drops slightly in November

Published 3:59 pm Monday, January 16, 2012

Polk County’s unemployment rate dropped slightly in November, from 7.6 percent in October to 7.1 percent in November, according to the latest figures from the North Carolina Employment Security Commission (ESC).
Polk followed a statewide trend of dropping unemployment in November. Unemployment rates decreased in 74 of North Carolina’s 100 counties in November. Rates increased in 20 counties and remained the same in six.
“Unemployment rates continued to drop across North Carolina in November,” said ESC Chairman Lynn R. Holmes. “Over the year, rates have decreased in 71 counties. We remain focused on assisting our customers at our DES offices and JobLink Career Centers statewide.”
The county’s rate is the third lowest in the state. Orange County had the lowest rate at 5.8 percent, followed by Gates at 6.9 percent. Buncombe, Currituck and Watauga counties all had a rate of 7.2 percent.
Scotland County had the state’s highest unemployment rate at 16.6 percent, down 0.2 percent from October. Edgecombe County had the second highest rate at 15.5 percent, also down 0.2 percent from October.
Polk County’s November rate reflected a 0.8 percentage point drop from November 2010, when Polk’s rate was 7.6 percent.
Statewide, North Carolina’s unemployment rate (not seasonally adjusted) decreased from 9.7 in October to 9.5 in November. The state’s rate was 2.7 percent lower than the national rate in November, which was 9.8 percent.
Unemployment rates decreased in all 14 of the state’s metropolitan statistical areas. The Rocky Mount metropolitan area had the highest unemployment rate in November at 12.7 percent. The Durham/Chapel Hill area had the lowest rate at 7.3 percent, down 0.3 of a percentage point from the previous month. Asheville followed at 7.5 percent.
Polk County had a labor force of 9,212 in November, of whom 653 were on the unemployment rolls.
Statewide, the number of people who were unemployed in November was 427,141.
South Carolina’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 9.9 percent in November, an unprecedented 0.6 percent drop from October’s 10.5 percent, according to figures from the Employers Association of South Carolina. This represents the largest monthly drop since 1976, the first year the Bureau of Labor Statistics made the monthly data series available.
Spartanburg County’s jobless rate dropped from 9.6 percent in October to 9.2 percent in November. Spartanburg’s current rate is a decrease of 1.3 percent from November 2010, when the rate was 10.9.
The rate in Greenville County also dropped, from 8.0 to 7.4 percent, a decrease of 1.6 percent from November 2010, when it was 9.0.

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