RALEIGH -- Unemployment rates fell in nearly all 100 North Carolina counties last month. That's according to the latest numbers released Friday by the state Department of Commerce.
In the Triangle, rates decreased in all 14 of the state's metro areas, including in the Raleigh-Cary area at 7.8 percent. The Durham-Chapel Hill area had the lowest unemployment rate at 7.4 percent last month. Graham County has the highest unemployment rate in the state at 18.5 percent.
In eastern NC, Robeson and Columbus counties have the highest rate in the coastal region at 12.9 and 12.6 percent. Onslow County had the lowest at 8.7.
Looking at the biggest changes, Carteret County dropped a full percentage point, and no coastal counties went up. Pender County had the smallest drop at .3 percent.
In the Triad, Alamance County saw the biggest improvement in March, dropping 1.2 percent. It's now at 9.5 percent unemployment. Guilford County's sitting at the same level. Davie and Forsyth counties are both below 9 percent unemployment now. Stokes County dropped .9 percent last month, bringing it to 9 percent even and Yadkin County is at 9.4 percent.
Davidson, Montgomery, Randolph, Rockingham and Surry counties still have unemployment rates above the state average, but all dropped in March. Montgomery County is still the highest in the area at 11.4 percent, but that's down .6 percent from February.
Rates went down in all of the counties in the Charlotte area. In Mecklenburg County, the unemployment rate is down to 9.4 percent. Cabarrus County is at 9 percent. Union is still the county with the lowest unemployment in the area. They are at 11.2 percent. Richmond County still has the highest unemployment at 12.7 percent, but also saw the largest drop this month of .9 percent.
North Carolina's unemployment rate is 9.6 percent.