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Mecklenburg County sheds jobs in August / October 10, 2018
Mecklenburg County’s jobless numbers ticked up one tenth of a percent in August, according to the latest number released by the Virginia Employment Commission last week.

For August, the county’s jobless rate stood at 4.4 percent compared to 4.3 percent in April.

The more important news continues to be the county’s loss of workers from its labor force. Between July and August, more than 250 people left the labor force as the county lost the same number of jobs.

In the past two years, since August 2016, Mecklenburg County lost more than 500 workers from its labor pool and nearly 375 jobs. Yet with 200 fewer workers filing for unemployment, the county’s jobless rate has fallen from 5.8 percent to 4.4 percent during that same period.

Next door, Halifax County faced a similar plight as it shed 549 jobs and 587 workers in August. As a result, the county’s unemployment rate skipped up one-tenth of a percent to 4.3 percent from July’s official mark of 4.2 percent

By contrast, statewide the labor force continued to expand for the eighth consecutive month, albeit slightly, bringing Virginia’s total labor force in August to a new record high of 4,356,189.

The decline in overall jobs was a trend seen among Mecklenburg’s adjoining neighbors. Brunswick, Charlotte, and Lunenburg counties all experienced a decline in the number of jobs in August, although the drops were not as acute as in Mecklenburg with its loss of 252 jobs. Brunswick County lost 92 jobs, Charlotte County 100 jobs, and Lunenburg County 118 jobs.

Halifax County outpaced the others shedding 549 jobs between July and August. The result was an uptick in the unemployment rate for every county except Charlotte.

The localities’ official unemployment rates for August are as follows:

» Mecklenburg, 4.4 percent

» Brunswick, 5.1 percent

» Charlotte, 3.8 percent

» Halifax, 4.3 percent

» Luneburg, 3.3 percent

Virginia’s rate of unemployment for August was 3.1 percent and the national rate was 3.9 percent.

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