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Jobless rate rises just shy of 10 percent
SoVaNow.com / March 25, 2013Halifax County’s jobless rate jumped to near-double digits in January, reversing months of steady improvement as 143 workers joined the ranks of the unemployed.
The setback for labor markets that seemed to be on the mend in recent months was felt across much of Southside Virginia. Halifax’s jobless rate in January — 9.9 percent, compared to 8.7 percent the month before, in December 2012 — was less acute than in some comparable areas.
Brunswick County, for instance, had the highest unemployment of any county in Southside Virginia with a jobless rate of 11.5 percent in January. Mecklenburg County, which has had three major employers announce plans to close in 2013, posted January unemployment of 10.7 percent, up from 9.1 percent in December.
The unemployment numbers are seasonally unadjusted, meaning they do not take into account normal trends for the time of year.
In its analysis, the Virginia Employment Commission noted that higher joblessness is “usual” in January “due to cutbacks in the retail and leisure and hospitality sectors after the holidays and winter break closings at public and private schools and colleges.”
The month saw some major movement in local unemployment rates. Pulaski County, for instance, posted the highest unemployment rate of any Virginia county, 13.0 percent. Its jobless rate in December 2012 was only 5.4 percent.
In year-to-year comparisons, however, the news was mixed for the state of Virginia. Seasonally adjusted unemployment was unchanged from December to January, with a jobless rate of 5.6 percent, but the raw, unadjusted numbers showed an overall loss of 9,980 jobs.
In Halifax County, 1,558 members of the local labor force were job hunting in January, compared with 1,415 in December 2012. January a year ago, 1,624 persons were actively seeking work in the county.
Of the active labor pool of 15,770 workers in January, 14,212 had jobs. Jobless workers continue to be counted as part of the active pool if they are actively seeking work and are drawing unemployment benefits. Overall, the labor pool shrank by more than 400 members, and the county reported 564 fewer jobs in January than in December.
Last year in January, there were 314 more workers on the job, compared to this year.
Elsewhere in Southside Virginia, counties and cities reported the following unemployment rates in January:
Brunwick County, 11.5 percent, up from 9.8 percent in December.
Mecklenburg County, 10.7 percent, up from 9.1 percent in December.
The City of Danville, 10.6 percent, up from 9.5 percent in December.
Charlotte County, 8.4 percent, up from 7.2 percent in December.
Pittsylvania County, 7.5 percent, up from 6.5 percent in December.
The City of Martinsville, 16.9 percent, up from 15.2 percent in December.
Henry County, 10.7 percent, up from 9.2 percent in December.
CommentsHows that hope and change now? ALso the county is getting ready to raise you taxes. Government wants all the little people to sell out to big rich folks so they can just tax and spend
- By allpolitical2 on 03 / 25 / 13
News & Record