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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

Jobless rate rises to 6.3% in January

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

By KEN BRADLEY - Staff Writer

Franklin County's jobless rate jumped to 6.3 percent in January from 5.7 percent in December 2012, according to the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC).

The Virginia jobless rate also increased in January to 6.2 percent from the December rate of 5.5 percent.

Ann D. Lang, VEC senior economist, said the number of unemployed statewide in January increased to 260,188, while the labor force expanded by 17,007.

The number of Virginians employed in January was 3,950,371 in a labor force size of 4,210,559.

The higher January unemployment rate was due to cutbacks in the retail and leisure and hospitality sectors after the holidays and winter break closings at public and private schools and colleges, Lang said.

The state jobless rate continued to be below the U.S. jobless rate of 8.5 percent in January.

The VEC said 1,790 persons in Franklin County were unemployed in January and looking for a job. That's up from 1,620 persons in Franklin County who were unemployed in December and seeking employment.

Lang said 26,684 persons were employed in Franklin County during January in a labor force size of 28,474.

January unemployment rates in neighboring cities and counties: Bedford City, 10.0 percent, down from 10.8 percent in December; Bedford County, 6.1 percent, up from 5.4 percent; Floyd County, 7.9 percent, up from 5.6 percent; Henry County, 10.7 percent, up from 9.2 percent; Martinsville 16.9 percent, up from 15.2 percent; Patrick County, 9.4 percent, up from 7.6 percent; Pittsylvania County, 7.5 percent, up from 6.5 percent; Roanoke City, 7.7 percent, up from 6.8 percent; Roanoke County 5.3 percent, up from 5.0; percent; and Salem, 6.4 percent, up from 5.5 percent.

Franklin County's unemployment rate includes the towns of Rocky Mount and Boones Mill.

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