Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in five of North Carolina’s counties in July, decreased in 70, and remained unchanged in 25, according to figures released by the N.C. Department of Commerce.

Jackson County’s rate stood at 4.6 percent, down 0.1 percent from June and .4 percent from July 2018. Some 20,766 were employed in the county and 957 unemployed.

Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 7.4 percent, while Buncombe County had the lowest at 3.3 percent.

Twelve of the state’s 15 metro areas experienced rate decreases, and three remained unchanged. Among the metro areas, Rocky Mount at 6 percent had the highest rate and Asheville had the lowest rate at 3.5 percent. The November not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 4.4 percent.

When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates increased in 96 counties, decreased in two and remained unchanged in two. Fourteen metro areas experienced rate increases over the year and one decreased.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in July by 33,300 to 4,953,588, while those unemployed decreased by 2,405 to 226,720. 

Since July 2018, the number of workers employed statewide increased 125,372, while those unemployed increased 19,297.

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.

The next unemployment update is scheduled for Sept. 20, when the state unemployment rate for August will be released.