The Virginia unemployment rate rose to 10.6 percent in April while total nonfarm payroll employment fell by 383,400
— The changes in these measures reflect the effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain it. —
RICHMOND— Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose 7.3 percentage points in April to 10.6 percent, which is 7.7 percentage points above the rate from a year ago. According to household survey data in April, the labor force contracted by 141,611, or 3.2 percent, to 4,297,739, as the number of unemployed residents rose by 308,629. The number of employed residents decreased by 450,240 to 3,843,816. Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate continues to be below the national rate, which rose to 14.7 percent.
Virginia nonagricultural wage and salary employment, from the monthly establishment survey, fell by 383,400 jobs in April to 3,684,000. March’s preliminary estimates were revised downward 3,900, adding to that month’s job losses. In April, private sector employment decreased by 351,900 jobs to 2,981,000, while public sector payrolls decreased by 31,500 jobs to 703,000.
Employment fell in all major industry sectors, with particularly heavy job losses in leisure and hospitality. The largest job loss during April occurred in leisure and hospitality with a decline of 161,400 jobs to 240,800. Nationwide, much of the decrease within the leisure and hospitality sector occurred in food services and drinking places, but employment also fell in the arts, entertainment, and recreation industry and in the accommodation industry. Other employment losses included education and health services (-57,400 jobs) to 497,800, trade and transportation (-49,100 jobs) to 611,700, professional and business services (-43,700 jobs) to 730,200, miscellaneous services (-19,900 jobs) to 182,800, construction (-7,200 jobs) to 196,200, and manufacturing (-6,300 jobs) to 233,800. Government employment dropped by 31,500 jobs in April. Employment in local government was down by 19,000 jobs, and declined in state government (-11,600 jobs) while federal government slipped by 900 jobs.