If two downstate jurisdictions wouldn’t mind stepping out of the way, Arlington could regain the solo crown of lowest jobless rate in Virginia that it held for years and years in the pre-COVID environment.
With 151,259 residents counted in the civilian workforce and 3,239 looking for jobs, the county’s jobless rate in June stood at 2.1 percent, down from 2.2 percent in May and from 3.7 percent in June 2021. New figures were reported Aug. 3 by the Virginia Employment Commission.
Arlington’s jobless rate for the month ranked lowest in Northern Virginia – take that, city of Falls Church! – but is only second lowest among Virginia’s 133 cities and counties, ranking in June below Highland County (2 percent) and tied with Madison County.
Rounding out the five lowest were King George and Grayson counties, tied at 2.3 percent. They were all among the 65 Virginia localities – almost half – that posted jobless figures of 3 percent or less.
On the other side of the coin, five jurisdictions saw jobless rates at or above 5 percent for the month: Petersburg (6.6%), Emporia (5.1%) and Buchanan County and Hopewell (5% each).
Across Northern Virginia, month-over-month jobless rates in June tended to be either static or slightly down. Aside from Arlington, the rates were 2.2 percent in Falls Church (unchanged from a month before), 2.4 percent in Alexandria and in Loudoun County (down from 2.5% in each case), 2.5 percent in Fairfax County (down from 2.6%) and 2.8 percent in Prince William County (down from 2.9%).
For Northern Virginia as a whole, the jobless rate in June stood at 2.5 percent, down from 2.6 percent a month before and representing just over 1.6 million employed residents and a little more than 42,000 seeking jobs.
Virginia’s unemployment rate for June was 2.9 percent, down from 3 percent, while the national rate of 3.8 percent was up from 3.4 percent a year before.