For Release:
August 30, 2023
Timothy Aylor
Senior Economist
Economic Information & Analytics Division
(804) 786-3976

Virginia’s July County and Area Employment Figures Released

~ Over-the-Year Employment Increases in All of Virginia’s Counties1 as Unemployment Drops in One Hundred Twenty-One Counties ~

RICHMOND— Compared to a year earlier, July 2023 unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in 126 of Virginia’s 134 counties and cities, remained unchanged in six, and increased in only two. In July, Petersburg City had the highest unemployment rate at 4.8 percent, while Highland County had the lowest rate at 1.6 percent. The employment estimates in this release are subject to large seasonal patterns; therefore, it is advisable to focus on over-the-year changes in the not seasonally adjusted estimates.

Among the metro areas, Northern Virginia2 had the lowest unemployment rate at 2.3 percent, while Lynchburg had the highest at 3.2 percent. The not seasonally adjusted statewide rate was 2.7 percent, compared to 3.0 percent a year earlier.

The July 2023 local unemployment rates are now online here. You can also access the local unemployment rates by clicking the Area Rates link under the unemployment graph located on

The statistical reference week for the household survey this month was the week of July 9-15, 2023.

The August 2023 statewide unemployment rate and employment data for both the state and metropolitan areas are scheduled to be released on Tuesday, September 19, 2023. The data will be available on our website The Virginia Employment Commission plans to release the August local area unemployment rates on Wednesday, September 27, 2023.

[1] The Commonwealth of Virginia is divided into 95 counties, along with 39 independent cities that are considered county-equivalents for census purposes.

[2] Northern Virginia is defined as the Virginia portion of the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).