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Halifax County jobless rate improves in December

Halifax County’s unemployment rate improved slightly to 11.2 percent in December, according to statistics recently released by the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC).

That represents a rate three-tenths of a percentage point lower than the November non-seasonally adjusted rate of 11.5 percent. A total of 14,644 county residents were employed out of a total labor force of 16,487. The VEC said 1,843 county residents were looking for jobs during the month.

Halifax County’s jobless rate in December 2009 was 11.8 percent, according to VEC archive data.

Virginia’s unadjusted jobless rate was 6.4 percent in December, down two-tenths of a percentage point from November’s 6.6 percent rate. A total of 266,648 Virginians were looking for jobs out of the total state workforce of 4,157,362, according to VEC data. A total of 3,890,714 Virginians were employed in December.

Virginia’s rate is 2.7 percentage points lower than the national jobless rate of 9.1 percent.

Nationwide, 13,997,000 Americans were unemployed in December out of a total work force of 153,156,000, according to figures released.

VEC data showed unemployment rates in neighboring Virginia counties also were lower in December.

Mecklenburg County’s jobless rate fell to 11.2 percent in December, a decrease of three-tenths of a percentage point.

Charlotte County’s rate improved to 9.3 percent, down from 9.5 percent in November.

Campbell County’s rate fell in December to 6.5 percent, down four-tenths of a percentage point from November’s rate of 6.9 percent.

The City of Danville’s jobless rate improved three-tenths of a percentage point in December, VEC officials said. Danville’s rate for December was 12 percent, down from the 12.3 percent November rate.

Pittsylvania County’s rate for December dropped four-tenths of a percentage point to 9.3 percent. The November jobless rate in Pittsylvania County was 9.7 percent.

Martinsville continued its hold on the highest unemployment rate in Virginia in December, even though the city’s jobless rate fell six-tenths of a percentage point. Martinsville’s rate improved to 18.3 percent, down from the November rate of 18.9 percent.

The VEC reported Henry County’s rate improved one-half of a percentage point in December to 12.6 percent, down from the November rate of 13.1 percent.

Arlington County again had the lowest jobless rate in the state. Arlington County’s unemployment for December was 3.7 percent.

A total of 20 Virginia jurisdictions had double-digit unemployment in December, VEC officials said.