Virginia’s unemployment rate continues down

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Virginia’s unemployment rate is at its lowest in over a decade.

Numbers released Friday by the Virginia Employment Commission show that April’s rate has dropped to 3.3 percent across the commonwealth. Unemployment hasn’t been that low since December of 2007, when the rate was also 3.3 percent.

That statewide rate dropped 0.1 percent between March and April and it was a drop of 0.5 percent from a year ago. In April, the labor force expanded by 5,735, which was the third consecutive monthly increase. The 4,331,079 people working was a new record high.

The largest job gain during April occurred in the private education and health services sector. That was followed by job gains in both professional and business services and in trade and transportation. There were smaller gains in manufacturing, leisure and hospitality and in finance.

Unemployment rate good news to the governor

In a news release, Governor Northam called the unemployment drop “…a clear sign that the work we are doing to grow and diversify our economy is paying off. We must make every effort to maintain this momentum by investing in economic fundamentals like health care, education and workforce development. I am optimistic that we can work with the General Assembly to pass a budget that expands Medicaid and creates more opportunities for Virginians across the Commonwealth to thrive in their communities.”

Virginia has the lowest seasonally adjusted unemployment rate among the Southeast states. Virginia, has the sixth best rate among the states east of the Mississippi. Virginia remains ranked fourteenth in the nation for seasonally adjusted unemployment rate.

“Today’s announcement reaffirms that our Commonwealth is trending in a positive direction,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “We must continue to do everything in our power to attract new businesses to Virginia and to help existing businesses grow in every corner of the Commonwealth.”

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Ed Tobias
Ed Tobias brings more than four decades of reporting and news management experience to his work at FairfaxNews. Tobias managed news coverage for Associated Press Radio for over twenty years.  This included coverage of the 9/11 attacks, the Iraq War, Hurricane Katrina, the death of Princess Diana, the Challenger and Columbia shuttle disasters and national election primaries, conventions and campaigns.  He was part of the team that built AP’s on-line video operation. Prior to joining AP, Tobias was News Director at all-news WTOP in Washington, D.C. He has won two Ohio State Awards for his reporting and producing and he led coverage that won an Edward R. Murrow Award.