Virginia’s economy continues to improve with steady job growth across nearly all sectors of the economy and in all regions of the state. The biggest gains this spring have been in the hard-hit Leisure & Hospitality sector. While unemployment remains above pre-pandemic levels, the rate has come down significantly and is below the national rate. The average 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate has been around 3% for nearly a year, with only a slight and temporary uptick earlier this spring. Consumer sentiment improved in June, reflecting optimism as the economy opens up.
Here are some key numbers to watch:
3,200 is the number of jobs added to Virginia’s economy between May and June 2021. While job growth has been steady for several months, Virginia has still not gained back all of the jobs lost last spring.
2,800 is the number of jobs added to the Accommodation & Food Services sector in Virginia between May and June 2021. This means that the vast majority of the job growth in June was driven by this sector, which was the hardest hit part of the economy during the pandemic.
4.3% is the June 2021 unemployment rate in Virginia. Unemployment in the commonwealth has declined steadily for the past 12 months, although the statewide unemployment rate is still above where it was prior to the onset of the pandemic.
5.4% is the percent change in Consumer Price Index (CPI) between June 2020 and June 2021. The annual change in CPI is a common measure of inflation in the economy. Inflation has been driven by higher prices for autos, airline tickets, and other consumer goods.
2.78% is the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage (FRM) rate during the last week of July, according to Freddie Mac. Rates have fallen somewhat in recent weeks with concerns about the Delta variant of the coronavirus and continued uncertainty in the economy.
Looking for more insights on the state of the economy and what it means for the real estate industry in Virginia? Join me on August 5th at 3:00 PM for our quarterly By the Numbers webinar.
Click here to send any comments or questions about this piece to Virginia REALTORS® Chief Economist Lisa Sturtevant, PhD.