Journal Article

Employment Barriers in the Rural Fifth District

Abstract: In Virginia, 75 percent of working-age adults are employed, in line with the national average of 74 percent. But there are significant disparities across geographies. In Loudoun County, Va., in the Washington, D.C., metro area, the share is 84.1 percent. On the other side of the state, in Lee County, just 48.2 percent of working-age adults are employed. This is true of many socioeconomic indicators: Aggregation is necessary to understand broad outcomes, but with aggregation, we lose important geographic distinctions and, thus, the opportunity to identify both challenges and solutions. This is part of why the Richmond Fed is working to understand how and why outcomes vary between more urban and more rural areas of the Fifth District. (See also "Understanding Geographic Inequality," Econ Focus, Fourth Quarter 2019.) In addition, as a regional Reserve Bank, we need to understand the full dynamics of the labor market in order to fulfill our mandate to promote maximum employment.

Keywords: employment; rural; socioeconomic indicators; fifth district;

Access Documents


Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond

Part of Series: Econ Focus

Publication Date: 2022

Issue: 2Q

Pages: 30-34