N.Va. unemployment, June 2020

Arlington joined most other Northern Virginia jurisdictions in continuing to claw back from the depths of the initial blast of COVID-19 and the government-mandated economic shutdown in June, according to new federal data.

The county’s unemployment rate of 5.9 percent was unchanged from May, but represented a modest increase in those employed and a slight decrease in those looking for work, according to figures reported July 29 by the Virginia Employment Commission.

The jobless rate was enough to tie Arlington for fifth lowest among Virginia’s 134 cities and counties.

While Arlington and neighboring Falls Church saw little or no statistical improvement (Falls Church saw its jobless rate rise from 4.8 percent to 4.9 percent), other large jurisdictions in Northern Virginia posted improvements in their job pictures from May to June.

The jobless rate declined from 8.1 percent to 7.7 percent in Loudoun County; from 8.5 percent to 8.1 percent in Fairfax County; from 8.4 percent to 8.3 percent in Alexandria; and from 9.8 percent to 9.2 percent in Prince William County. In Northern Virginia as a whole, the unemployment rate dipped from 8.3 percent in May to 8 percent in June, representing 1.52 million in the civilian workforce and 132,000 looking for jobs.

Northern Virginia in June continued to outperform the commonwealth as a whole (Virginia’s jobless rate dipped from 8.9 percent to 8.5 percent), while the Old Dominion was outperforming the nation (national unemployment dropped from 13 percent to 11.2 percent).

Among the state’s cities and counties, Falls Church had the lowest jobless rate, followed by Madison County (5.1 percent), Highland County (5.2 percent) and the city of Poquoson (5.7 percent). Tied at 5.9 percent were Arlington, Augusta and Rappahannock counties.

Petersburg (17.9 percent), Emporia (14.4 percent) and Bath County and the city of Martinsville (14.3 percent each) had the highest unemployment rates for the month.

Nationally, unemployment fell 3.2 million from May to June to stand at 17.8 million, while total employment rose 4.9 million to 142.2 million, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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