RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — On Friday, Governor Ralph Northam announced that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 4.2 percent in July as the state’s labor force expanded to 4,241,686.

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Data also shows that the number of employed residents rose to 4,065,473, an increase of 15,413.

“Our administration is focused on creating an economic climate that will help Virginia’s workers and businesses thrive,” said Governor Northam. “The impressive gains in payroll employment and the downward trend of unemployment rates continue to show the strength and resiliency of our economy and our workforce as we recover from the pandemic. Virginians have shown great resolve over the last year and a half, and it is evident in the numbers we are seeing in this report.”

Year-over-year, the Commonwealth saw job gains of 3.8%. These gains come at the same time that Virginia was once again named America’s “Top State for Business” by CNBC.

“The continued decline in Virginia’s unemployment rate and the increase in payroll employment are all signs of a strong job market,” said Secretary of Labor Megan Healy.We believe that workers will continue to re-enter the labor force and that the strong job market will continue in the coming months.”

In July, the private sector added 134,100 jobs. The public sector gained 9,700 jobs. Officials say the largest over-the-year job increase occurred in the leisure and hospitality industry.