NC Unemployment Rates

Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in 99 of North Carolina’s counties in July and remained unchanged in one. Scotland County had the highest unemployment rate at 9.1 percent while Avery County had the lowest at 3.5 percent. All fifteen of the state’s metro areas experienced rate decreases. Among the metro areas, Rocky Mount had the highest rate at 6.7 percent while Durham-Chapel Hill and Raleigh each had the lowest at 3.9 percent. The July not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 4.6 percent.


Counties With Rates
5% or Below
Counties With Rates
Between 5% and 10%
Counties With Rates
10% or Above
July 70 30 0
June (revised) 59 41 0


When compared to the same month last year, not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates decreased in all 100 counties. All 15 of the state’s metro areas experienced rate decreases over the year.

The number of workers employed statewide (not seasonally adjusted) increased in July by 26,529 to 4,817,155, while those unemployed decreased by 15,020 to 232,409. Since July 2020, the number of workers employed statewide increased 300,560, while those unemployed decreased 228,345.

It is important to note that employment estimates are subject to large seasonal patterns; therefore, it is advisable to focus on over-the-year changes in the not seasonally adjusted estimates.

The next unemployment update is scheduled for Friday, September 17, 2021 when the state unemployment rate for August 2021 will be released.