The number of people holding full-time jobs may not necessarily be increasing significantly, but jobless rates continue to come down across the local region – in some cases approaching the low figures of the pre-COVID era.
Arlington was no exception, as its September jobless rate of 2.2 percent was down nearly a full percentage point from 3.1 percent in August, according to data reported Nov. 3 by the Virginia Employment Commission.
Arlington had 144,841 residents in the civilian workforce and 3,191 looking for jobs during the month, according to figures. The 2.2-percent rate was less than half that tally of 4.8 percent recorded a year before, when the region was still facing major economic impacts from COVID and resultant government lockdowns.
Arlington’s jobless-rate decline was mirrored across the region, as month-over-month unemployment rates dropped from 2.7 percent to 2 percent in Falls Church; from 3 percent to 2.5 percent in Loudoun County; from 3.4 percent to 2.7 percent in Fairfax County; from 3.8 percent to 2.7 percent in Alexandria; and from 3.8 percent to 3.2 percent in Prince William County.
In Northern Virginia as a whole, the jobless rate of 2.7 percent in September was down from 3.4 percent a year before, representing 1,558,670 in the civilian workforce and 48,803 looking for jobs.
Among Virginia’s 133 cities and counties, the lowest jobless rates for the month were found in Falls Church (2 percent); Arlington, King George and Madison counties (2.2 percent each); and Grayson and Richmond counties (2.3 percent). The highest rates could be found in the cities of Petersburg (8.3 percent), Martinsville (6.8 percent), Emporia (6.5 percent) and Hopewll (6.2 percent).
For the month, Virginia’s jobless rate of 3.2 percent was down from 3.8 percent a month before and stood at half the 6.4-percent rate of September 1920. The national jobless rate was 4.6 percent, down from 5.3 percent a month before and 7.7 percent a year before.