So many North Carolina residents are unemployed that the state has borrowed $13 million from the federal government to pay their benefits this week. An Employment Security Commission spokesman said Thursday the money covered two days of payments and that the state may have to borrow again Monday. The loans are interest-free if repaid by October. North Carolina last borrowed money for the unemployment insurance trust fund in 2002, when it borrowed 23 times. In December, the state had an unemployment rate of 8.7 percent; the highest since June 1983.
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