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Outlook dims on jobs front in Halifax County

The jobs outlook in Halifax County got even bleaker in July with unemployment rates once again soaring into double digits. 

The jobless rate increased a whole percentage point to 10.3 percent here, one percent higher than the 9.3 percent rate reported in June, according to the latest Virginia Employment Commission data released Wednesday.

Some 14,124 county residents were employed out of a total labor force of 15,738. The VEC said 1,614 county residents were looking for jobs during the month.

Halifax County’s jobless rate in July a year ago stood at 11.5 percent, according to VEC archive data.

A total of 264,281 Virginians was looking for jobs out of a total state workforce of 4,383,653, according to VEC data.

Virginia’s rate is 6 percent, 2.6 percentage points lower than the national jobless rate of 8.6 percent.

Nationwide 13,400,000 Americans were unemployed in July out of a total work force of 156,526,000, according to figures released.

VEC data showed most unemployment rates in neighboring Virginia counties increased in July with one decreasing slightly.

Mecklenburg County’s jobless rate increased to 10.4 percent, up five-tenths of a percentage point from June’s 9.9 percent.

Charlotte County’s rate also increased to 9 percent, up two-tenths of a percentage point from June’s 8.8 percent.

Campbell County’s rate decreased to 6.1 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point from June’s 6.3 percent.

The City of Danville’s jobless rate increased to 11.4 percent, up three-tenths of a percentage point from June’s 11.1 percent, VEC officials said.

Pittsylvania County’s rate for June also increased to 7.6 percent, up four-tenths of a percentage point from June’s 7.2 percent.

Martinsville’s jobless rate showed a tremendous increase jumping to 16.3 percent, up 2.1 percentage points from June’s 14.2 percent.

The VEC reported Henry County’s rate increased to 10.3, up five-tenths of a percentage point from June’s rate of 9.8 percent.

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

 A total of 13 Virginia jurisdictions had double-digit unemployment in July, VEC officials said.

Counties with the highest unemployment rate in July included Martinsville at 16.3 percent, Williamsburg, 13.5 percent, Lexington City, 13 percent; Petersburg, 12.1 percent; Emporia, 11.8 percent; Danville, 11.4 percent; Brunswick County, 11.3 percent; Franklin City, 10.8 percent, Covington City, 10.4 percent, Mecklenburg County, 10.4 percent, Halifax County, 10.3 percent, Henry County 10.3 percent and Prince Edward County, 10.2 percent.