The Richmond region’s unemployment rate increased in May as the local labor force swelled.
The jobless rate for the region stood at 3.0% in May, up from 2.6% in April but the same as in May 2018, the Virginia Employment Commission reported on Wednesday.
The rates have not been adjusted for seasonal factors that can temporarily affect employment such as school closings.
The region’s labor force grew by almost 5,000 from April to May to 685,502, and the number of people counted as employed and unemployed both increased.
A total of 20,599 people were unemployed in the region in May, up from 20,197 in the same month of 2018. The number of people counted as employed was 664,903 in May, up from 655,293 in May 2018.
Virginia’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate also increased 0.1 of a percent from April to May to 3.0% as the state’s labor force continued to expand. Virginia’s unemployment rate remained below the national rate, which was unchanged at 3.6% in May.
Virginia’s other major metropolitan areas also saw rising unemployment rates from April to May.
Employers in the Richmond region added a net total of about 5,600 jobs from May 2018 to May 2019, a growth rate of 0.8%, which matched the state’s overall job growth rate and lagged the national growth rate of 1.6%.