“North Carolina’s jobless rate fell to 6.7 percent in January from 8.8 percent a year earlier, a 2.1 percentage point drop that was the biggest among the 50 states…” — Bloomberg
The latest jobs report from the North Carolina Department of Commerce and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows a continuation of an already improving employment trend in North Carolina which began taking shape around August of 2013. This trend coincided with reforms to the state’s Unemployment Insurance system that took effect in July of last year.
The March 17th report includes new data for January 2014 and revised historical data for 2013.
BLS reports that the number of people employed in North Carolina went up by 17,407 in January, and its latest report shows the state’s unemployment rate continues to drop — from 8.8% in January 2013 to 6.7% in January of 2014. This drop of 2.1% in unemployment over the past year shows North Carolina outperforming every other state in the nation in this regard.
In a statement released yesterday, House Speaker Thom Tillis said “Our state’s unemployment rate continues to drop at a faster pace than the national average – great news for North Carolinians trying to get back to work. We are proud to see the results of the fiscally conservative, pro-business policies that the General Assembly enacted over the past three years help North Carolina’s economy gain momentum.”
The change in the unemployment rate also appears to have less to do with people leaving the labor force (as previously claimed) and more to do with increasing labor rolls. In fact, the total number of eligible workers expanded by 6,000 people in January of 2013, reversing a negative trend from the previous year.