Virginia's July unemployment rate rises

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's jobless rate rose for the second time in as many months after remaining steady at the lowest rate in three years.

The Virginia Employment Commission says Virginia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose 0.2 percentage points to 5.9 percent in July.

The rate is still 0.5 percentage points lower than a year ago. Virginia's jobless rate overall has been trending down since January 2010, when joblessness peaked at 7.3 percent. Increases in recent months follow a pattern similar to last year.

The rate is still below the national average, which rose slightly to 8.3 percent.

The Labor Department says rates rose in 44 states last month. Rates fell in 2 states and Washington, and were unchanged in 4.