West Virginia sees lowest unemployment in over a decade


West Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has improved every month in 2019.


CHARLESTON, WV – Gov. Jim Justice announced today that job numbers for August 2019 show the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has dropped to 4.6 percent. This figure surpassed the previous record for this decade in West Virginia and stands as the best seasonally adjusted unemployment rate seen in the state since October 2008.

“When you think back to before I walked in the door, it was tough, that’s all there is to it,” Gov. Justice said. “Now, we’re finally starting to tell our story; that West Virginia is the perfect place to live and work in paradise.

“Businesses are realizing West Virginia is the diamond in the rough that they may have missed in a lot of ways. Now, with that realization, we hope to see more and more businesses choose West Virginia as a place to grow and bring more jobs along with them.”

West Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has been on a steady decline every month in 2019.

“We keep setting records and getting better and better every month,” Gov. Justice said. “It’s the result of a lot of hard work that’s being done by a lot of great people in my administration to bring more job opportunities to West Virginia and to make sure our citizens have a chance to get a great paycheck and are able to put food on the table for their families.” 

Seasonal adjustment is a statistical technique that attempts to remove the influences of predictable seasonal patterns to reveal how employment and unemployment change from month to month, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Over the course of a year, the size of the labor force, the levels of employment and unemployment, and other measures of labor market activity undergo fluctuations due to seasonal events including changes in weather, harvests, major holidays, and school schedules. Because these seasonal events follow a somewhat regular pattern each year, their influence on statistical trends can be eliminated by seasonally adjusting the statistics from month to month. These seasonal adjustments make it easier to observe the underlying trends and other nonseasonal movements in the series.

The not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate also dropped in August to 4.5 percent, as the total number of unemployed West Virginia residents declined by 500. To-date in Calendar Year 2019, total unemployment is down by 10,200 across the state.

“It doesn’t matter how you cut it, we’re flat out doing better, that’s all there is to it,” Gov. Justice said. “Now, we still have a long way to go. We’d love to have unemployment as close to zero as possible. 

“But we’re clearly moving in the right direction. Now we’ve just got to keep going.”

To view the most recent Labor Force Summary, now available on the WorkForce West Virginia website, click HERE.

To view available jobs in West Virginia, click HERE.


Contact Information

Jordan Damron, jordan.l.damron@wv.gov


Office of the Governor
State Capitol, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E
Charleston, WV 25305

Office Phone:
304.558.2000 or 1.888.438.2731

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