Counties with the highest unemployment rate in Virginia

Written by:
November 15, 2022
Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

Counties with the highest unemployment rate in Virginia

Unemployment rates, while significantly lower than the alarming pandemic peak of 14.7% experienced in April 2020, remain a subject of concern, notably as economic experts bandy around the idea of a potential recession by 2023. The last economic recession—the Great Recession of 2008-2010—sent rates up to 10% as of October 2009. It was not until the spring of 2019 that unemployment finally went down to the same level it sits at now.

As of October of this year, national unemployment is at 3.7%, 0.2% higher than in September. Seasonally adjusted unemployment rates by state demonstrate a rather sizable spectrum, ranging from just 2.0% in Minnesota, to 4.5% in Illinois and 4.7% in the District of Columbia. Further breakdown by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows yet another county-based spectrum within each state.

To that end, Stacker compiled a list of counties with the highest unemployment rate in Virginia using data from the BLS. Counties are ranked by unemployment rate in September 2022.

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James Shelton32 // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Chesapeake

- Current unemployment rate: 2.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.5%
--- 1 year change: -0.8%
- Total labor force: 121,113 (3,234 unemployed)
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Lvklock // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Waynesboro

- Current unemployment rate: 2.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 10,445 (285 unemployed)
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Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Craig County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.8%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: +0.1%
- Total labor force: 2,223 (62 unemployed)
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Taber Andrew Bain from Richmond, VA, USA // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Cumberland County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.8%
--- 1 month change: -1.0%
--- 1 year change: -0.8%
- Total labor force: 4,777 (133 unemployed)
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Doug Kerr // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Russell County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.8%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.0%
- Total labor force: 11,461 (320 unemployed)

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Greenjettaguy82 // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Westmoreland County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.8%
--- 1 month change: -0.4%
--- 1 year change: -0.9%
- Total labor force: 9,966 (280 unemployed)
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Calstanhope // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Suffolk

- Current unemployment rate: 2.8%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 44,562 (1,243 unemployed)
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Taber Andrew Bain // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Amherst County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.9%
--- 1 month change: -0.5%
--- 1 year change: -0.4%
- Total labor force: 14,614 (418 unemployed)
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Cnjnva // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Mecklenburg County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.9%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.3%
- Total labor force: 13,478 (397 unemployed)
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Jquesen2003 // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Patrick County

- Current unemployment rate: 2.9%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 7,465 (217 unemployed)

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Betcantrell // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Norton

- Current unemployment rate: 2.9%
--- 1 month change: -1.1%
--- 1 year change: -1.9%
- Total labor force: 1,788 (52 unemployed)
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Nolanwebb // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Roanoke

- Current unemployment rate: 2.9%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.4%
- Total labor force: 47,289 (1,383 unemployed)
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Pubdog // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Caroline County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.9%
--- 1 year change: -0.7%
- Total labor force: 14,717 (447 unemployed)
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pfly // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Lee County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -0.3%
- Total labor force: 8,786 (260 unemployed)
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Alexiskferia // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Northampton County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.4%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 5,581 (168 unemployed)

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Ser_Amantio_di_Nicolao // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Northumberland County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -0.4%
- Total labor force: 5,808 (175 unemployed)
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Skye Marthaler // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Radford

- Current unemployment rate: 3.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.9%
--- 1 year change: -0.5%
- Total labor force: 9,043 (273 unemployed)
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Cecouchman // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Dinwiddie County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -0.5%
- Total labor force: 13,172 (403 unemployed)
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Taber Andrew Bain // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Greensville County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -0.8%
- Total labor force: 4,618 (143 unemployed)
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Puritan Nerd // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Prince Edward County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 11,148 (342 unemployed)

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Skye Marthaler // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Wise County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -1.0%
--- 1 year change: -1.5%
- Total labor force: 14,600 (453 unemployed)
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Aplomado~commonswiki // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Bristol

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -0.9%
- Total labor force: 7,362 (225 unemployed)
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Ken Lund from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Fredericksburg

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -1.0%
- Total labor force: 13,978 (428 unemployed)
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Alma mater // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Harrisonburg

- Current unemployment rate: 3.1%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -0.4%
- Total labor force: 24,318 (745 unemployed)
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Mojo Hand // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Essex County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -1.0%
- Total labor force: 5,306 (168 unemployed)

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vastateparksstaff // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Halifax County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 16,225 (515 unemployed)
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Rhyssdavies // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Lunenburg County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.4%
--- 1 year change: 0.0%
- Total labor force: 5,305 (170 unemployed)
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Raul654 // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Prince George County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -0.5%
- Total labor force: 14,770 (475 unemployed)
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Brian Stansberry // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Tazewell County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.9%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 16,236 (525 unemployed)
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Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Colonial Heights

- Current unemployment rate: 3.2%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -0.9%
- Total labor force: 8,196 (260 unemployed)

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Nathan Yates // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Dickenson County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.3%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.1%
- Total labor force: 5,238 (175 unemployed)
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Will Weaver // Wikicommons

#19. Richmond

- Current unemployment rate: 3.4%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.5%
- Total labor force: 116,025 (3,952 unemployed)
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Taber Andrew Bain from Richmond, VA, USA // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Buckingham County

- Current unemployment rate: 3.5%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -0.7%
- Total labor force: 6,279 (218 unemployed)
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Acroterion // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Lynchburg

- Current unemployment rate: 3.5%
--- 1 month change: -1.1%
--- 1 year change: -0.9%
- Total labor force: 35,228 (1,250 unemployed)
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Ewelch1 // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Norfolk

- Current unemployment rate: 3.5%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -1.4%
- Total labor force: 107,997 (3,767 unemployed)

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Smash the Iron Cage // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Covington

- Current unemployment rate: 3.6%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -1.6%
- Total labor force: 2,428 (87 unemployed)
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Zeete // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Lexington

- Current unemployment rate: 3.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.9%
--- 1 year change: -0.6%
- Total labor force: 2,298 (85 unemployed)
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Petra holden // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Newport News

- Current unemployment rate: 3.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.3%
- Total labor force: 86,748 (3,187 unemployed)
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SKM2000 // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Williamsburg

- Current unemployment rate: 3.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -0.3%
- Total labor force: 6,646 (248 unemployed)
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JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ MD // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Hampton

- Current unemployment rate: 3.8%
--- 1 month change: -0.7%
--- 1 year change: -1.3%
- Total labor force: 63,094 (2,382 unemployed)

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U.S. Navy photo // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Portsmouth

- Current unemployment rate: 4.0%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.9%
- Total labor force: 43,303 (1,750 unemployed)
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Tburgess68 // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Buchanan County

- Current unemployment rate: 4.2%
--- 1 month change: -1.0%
--- 1 year change: -1.4%
- Total labor force: 6,540 (272 unemployed)
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Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Franklin

- Current unemployment rate: 4.2%
--- 1 month change: -1.1%
--- 1 year change: -1.9%
- Total labor force: 3,539 (147 unemployed)
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Puddin Tain // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Sussex County

- Current unemployment rate: 4.3%
--- 1 month change: -1.2%
--- 1 year change: -0.9%
- Total labor force: 3,525 (152 unemployed)
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Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Brunswick County

- Current unemployment rate: 4.4%
--- 1 month change: -0.6%
--- 1 year change: -1.0%
- Total labor force: 6,020 (262 unemployed)

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Acroterion // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Danville

- Current unemployment rate: 4.5%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -1.4%
- Total labor force: 20,006 (900 unemployed)
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DanTD // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Emporia

- Current unemployment rate: 4.7%
--- 1 month change: -1.4%
--- 1 year change: -2.1%
- Total labor force: 2,552 (120 unemployed)
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Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Hopewell

- Current unemployment rate: 4.7%
--- 1 month change: -1.1%
--- 1 year change: -1.7%
- Total labor force: 9,301 (435 unemployed)
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Sleddog116 // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Martinsville

- Current unemployment rate: 4.7%
--- 1 month change: -0.8%
--- 1 year change: -2.6%
- Total labor force: 5,992 (283 unemployed)
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Nyttend // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Petersburg

- Current unemployment rate: 6.5%
--- 1 month change: -1.4%
--- 1 year change: -2.3%
- Total labor force: 12,244 (792 unemployed)

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