State jobless rate dips below 9 percent

May. 17, 2013 @ 11:40 AM

For the first time in nearly four years the statewide unemployment rate dropped to below 9 percent.

According to figures released Friday by the North Carolina Department of Commerce, the state's rate fell to 8.9 percent for the month of April. The decline was 0.3 percent from March's rate of 9.2 percent.

It also marked the third straight month the state's jobless rate declined.

The number of jobless in the state saw a decline of 15,000 over the month but close to 4,200 fewer people held jobs than in March.

Over the last 12 months, the unemployment rate hovered between 9.6 and 9.4 percent with the exception of March's rate. According to the Associated Press, the last time the state's unemployment rate was at 8.9 percent was in January 2009.