Unemployment mixed in our region

WASHINGTON, D.C. - We have new unemployment numbers to report tonight.

The U.S. Labor Department says the unemployment rate fell in half of the states last month, rose in 17, and was unchanged in eight.

We checked around our region and found The Virginia Employment Commission says the Commonwealth's jobless rate increased slightly in May, after two months of decreases.

The unemployment rate was 5.3 percent in May, up from 5.2 percent in April.

In the Tarheel state, the North Carolina Commerce Department says the May jobless rate fell to 8.8 percent, from 8.9 percent in April. State officials say that's the fourth straight month of improvement for North Carolina.

The national unemployment rate rose from 7.5 percent in April, to 7.6 percent in May.

While the Volunteer State has not released its unemployment figures, state officials are notifying unemployment benefit recipients that they will soon lose a weekly allowance. The Department of Labor and Workforce Development says Governor Bill Haslam has signed a new law that takes away a weekly $15 per child allowance.

The department says the change will help bolster the state unemployment trust fund and could also lower unemployment taxes paid by businesses.

According to state projections, ending the allowance will save the state $40 million a year.

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