Charlotte-area jobless rate rises to 6 percent in July

The Charlotte metropolitan area’s unemployment rose in July as the overall employment level throughout the region shrank.

The area’s jobless rate increased to 6 percent in July from an adjusted June rate of 5.8 percent, which was a bit lower than originally reported, the N.C. Commerce Department reported Tuesday. In July 2014, the area’s unemployment rate was 6.6 percent.

The Charlotte metro area includes Gastonia and Concord.

Charlotte’s overall employment level fell by 14,900 over the month, the most of any metro area in North Carolina. This was mainly because of a big drop in government employment, which fell by 18,400. The sector with the biggest gain was trade, transportation and utilities, which grew by 1,400.

Over the last year, Charlotte’s net employment rose by 37,900, the most of any other metro area.

Earlier this month, the Commerce Department reported that North Carolina’s unemployment rate rose for the fifth straight month to 5.9 percent in July from 5.8 percent the prior month. The statewide labor force shrank and the number of unemployed workers rose.

The unemployment rate nationwide was 5.3 percent in July. The U.S. Labor Department reports August figures on Friday.

Across North Carolina, unemployment rates increased in 79 of the 100 counties, the department reported. Here are the rates in some nearby counties:

▪ Cabarrus County’s rate rose to 5.7 percent from 5.5 percent.

▪ Gaston County’s rate rose to 6.4 percent from 6.3 percent.

▪ Iredell County’s rate rose to 5.9 percent from 5.8 percent.

▪ Lincoln County’s rate rose to 5.9 percent from 5.8 percent.

▪ Union County’s rate rose to 5.3 percent from 5.1 percent.

Katherine Peralta: 704-358-5079, @katieperalta