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Halifax County jobless rate brightens a bit

The jobs outlook in Halifax County brightened slightly in September, with  unemployment rates dropping out of the double digits for the first time in months.

The jobless rate decreased a full percentage point falling from August’s rate of 10.1 percent to 9.1 percent in September, according to the latest Virginia Employment Commission data released Tuesday.

Some 14,836 county residents were employed out of a total labor force of 16,313. The VEC said 1,477 county residents were looking for jobs during that month.

Halifax County’s jobless rate in September a year ago stood at 10.5 percent, according to VEC archive data.

A total of 243,285 Virginians was looking for jobs in September out of a total state workforce of 4,339,364, according to VEC data.

Virginia’s rate is 5.6 percent, 2 percentage points lower than the national jobless rate of 7.6 percent.

Nationwide 11,742,000 Americans were unemployed in September out of a total work force of 155,075,000, according to figures released Tuesday.

VEC data showed unemployment rates in all neighboring Virginia counties decreased slightly in September.

Mecklenburg County’s jobless rate decreased to 9.2 percent, down 1.1 percent from August’s 10.3 percent.

Charlotte County’s rate also decreased to 7.8 percent, down five-tenths of a percentage point from August’s 8.3 percent.

Campbell County’s rate decreased to 5.8 percent, down one-tenth of a percentage point from August’s 5.9 percent.

The City of Danville’s jobless rate decreased to 10 percent, down a full percentage point from August’s 11 percent, VEC officials said.

Pittsylvania County’s rate for September also decreased to 6.7 percent, down five-tenths of a percentage point from August’s 7.2 percent.

Martinsville’s jobless rate decreased to 14.9 percent, down a full percentage point from August’s 15.9 percent.

The VEC reported Henry County’s rate decreased to 9.4 percent, down seven-tenths of a percentage point from August’s rate of 10.1 percent.

Martinsville continues its hold on the highest rate of unemployment in the commonwealth.

 A total of seven Virginia jurisdictions had double-digit unemployment in September, VEC officials said.

Counties with the highest unemployment rate in July included Martinsville at 14.9 percent; Williamsburg, 12.5 percent; Emporia, 11.1 percent; Franklin City, 11 percent; Lexington City, 10.6 percent; Brunswick County, 10.6 percent; Petersburg, 10.1 percent; and Danville, 10 percent.