Economic Indicators

State Jobs Picture

Press release

Updated June 2017

The unemployment rate and the change in the number of jobs are important indicators of state labor market health. The unemployment rate is the share of the state’s labor force that is not currently employed and is actively looking for work. Healthy job growth is growth that provides regular employment for all individuals wanting a job. 

The map below shows the current unemployment rate in each state, and the percent change in the number of jobs in each state over the preceding 12 months. Clicking on a state will also show the change in that state’s unemployment rate or change in the number of jobs over the last 3 months, 12 months, and since December 2007—the peak of the previous business cycle.

Figure 1

Current state unemployment rate and percent change in total number of jobs over last 12 months

State Current unemployment rate Change in unemployment rate in last 3 months Change in unemployment rate in last 12 months Change in unemployment rate since Dec. 2007 State unemployment rate ranking from lowest to highest Percent change in number of jobs in last 12 months Change in number of jobs in last 12 months Percent change in number of jobs in last 3 months Change in number of jobs in last 3 months Percent change in number of jobs since Dec. 2007 Change in number of jobs since Dec. 2007
Alabama 4.9% -1.3% -0.9% 0.5% 40 1.8% 35,800 0.5% 9,900 -0.3% -6200
Alaska 6.7% 0.3% 0.1% 0.3% 51 -0.9% -2,900 0.2% 600 3.5% 11700
Arizona 5.1% 0.0% -0.2% 0.7% 47 1.8% 49,300 0.2% 4,700 2.4% 65100
Arkansas 3.4% -0.3% -0.7% -1.8% 14 1.8% 22,000 0.5% 6,100 3.2% 39300
California 4.7% -0.3% -0.8% -1.3% 36 1.5% 242,600 0.1% 22,800 7.3% 1219700
Colorado 2.3% -0.6% -1.1% -1.8% 1 2.4% 62,000 0.4% 11,200 11.2% 295100
Connecticut 4.9% 0.2% -0.4% 0.0% 41 0.7% 11,000 0.2% 4,200 -1.0% -17000
Delaware 4.7% 0.2% 0.3% 1.0% 37 0.9% 4,000 -0.2% -800 3.3% 15000
Washington D.C. 6.0% 0.3% -0.1% 0.3% 49 1.4% 11,200 0.6% 4,500 11.7% 92700
Florida 4.3% -0.7% -0.6% -0.6% 29 2.7% 228,000 0.4% 34,200 7.6% 650200
Georgia 4.9% -0.4% -0.4% -0.2% 42 2.4% 103,100 0.2% 8,700 6.6% 295000
Hawaii 2.7% -0.1% -0.4% -0.5% 3 1.3% 8,100 0.6% 3,800 4.0% 26300
Idaho 3.2% -0.4% -0.6% 0.0% 10 2.4% 16,800 -0.4% -2,500 7.4% 52200
Illinois 4.6% -0.8% -1.3% -0.9% 35 0.6% 34,700 -0.2% -12,600 0.8% 46400
Indiana 3.2% -0.9% -1.4% -1.6% 11 1.4% 41,700 -0.2% -4,900 3.9% 121300
Iowa 3.1% -0.1% -0.7% -0.6% 7 1.0% 15,200 0.1% 2,000 3.7% 57900
Kansas 3.7% -0.3% -0.4% -0.6% 16 -0.3% -3,700 -0.6% -8,000 1.3% 17800
Kentucky 5.0% 0.0% 0.0% -0.5% 45 1.4% 26,400 0.1% 1,300 4.1% 79500
Louisiana 5.7% -0.1% -0.5% 1.6% 48 0.5% 9,400 0.0% -400 2.4% 48200
Maine 3.2% 0.0% -0.7% -1.7% 12 0.6% 3,400 -0.1% -500 -0.2% -1200
Maryland 4.2% 0.0% -0.1% 0.8% 26 1.6% 43,100 -0.3% -9,500 4.5% 123500
Massachusetts 4.2% 0.8% 0.4% -0.4% 27 1.6% 58,300 0.1% 3,200 8.0% 289100
Michigan 4.2% -1.1% -0.6% -3.1% 28 1.7% 74,400 0.2% 6,600 3.1% 137200
Minnesota 3.7% -0.3% -0.2% -1.0% 17 1.7% 47,700 0.5% 14,800 5.7% 168800
Mississippi 4.9% -0.3% -1.0% -1.0% 43 0.2% 2,600 -0.1% -1,700 -1.4% -15800
Missouri 3.9% -0.2% -0.7% -1.5% 19 1.7% 47,000 -0.1% -2,800 2.6% 75500
Montana 3.9% 0.0% -0.3% -0.3% 20 1.6% 7,400 -0.4% -2,100 6.0% 28500
Nebraska 2.9% -0.3% -0.3% -0.1% 4 1.2% 11,700 0.0% 300 5.6% 57700
Nevada 4.7% -0.2% -1.1% -0.4% 38 2.7% 35,000 0.1% 1,200 2.6% 35000
New Hampshire 2.9% 0.2% 0.0% -0.6% 5 1.4% 9,500 -0.5% -3,300 3.7% 25000
New Jersey 4.1% -0.4% -1.0% -0.5% 22 1.1% 43,100 -0.6% -24,900 0.4% 17500
New Mexico 6.6% -0.2% -0.1% 2.6% 50 0.9% 7,400 0.0% -100 -1.5% -12300
New York 4.4% 0.0% -0.4% -0.5% 31 1.6% 149,100 0.2% 14,700 7.8% 743400
North Carolina 4.5% -0.6% -0.5% -0.5% 32 1.6% 69,200 0.2% 10,800 5.2% 229700
North Dakota 2.5% -0.5% -0.8% -0.6% 2 1.1% 4,800 1.0% 4,500 17.5% 76700
Ohio 4.9% -0.2% 0.0% -0.8% 44 0.8% 41,100 -0.1% -7,400 1.8% 97300
Oklahoma 4.3% -0.2% -0.7% 0.7% 30 0.1% 2,400 -0.2% -3,400 2.8% 46100
Oregon 3.6% -0.4% -1.4% -1.7% 15 2.4% 43,300 0.6% 11,000 7.2% 134200
Pennsylvania 5.0% 0.0% -0.5% 0.2% 46 0.9% 54,000 -0.5% -28,600 1.9% 110200
Rhode Island 4.1% -0.4% -1.3% -2.0% 23 1.5% 7,100 0.0% 100 1.5% 7600
South Carolina 4.1% -0.3% -1.0% -1.6% 24 1.6% 32,700 0.2% 4,600 6.3% 131600
South Dakota 2.9% 0.1% 0.1% 0.2% 6 1.3% 5,400 0.1% 300 6.6% 28900
Tennessee 4.0% -1.3% -0.6% -1.5% 21 1.9% 57,500 0.2% 5,100 6.9% 206600
Texas 4.8% -0.1% 0.1% 0.5% 39 2.2% 266,600 0.5% 55,900 13.9% 1699200
Utah 3.2% 0.1% -0.3% 0.2% 13 3.3% 46,600 0.8% 12,000 13.8% 203200
Vermont 3.1% 0.1% -0.2% -1.1% 8 0.5% 1,700 -0.6% -1,800 1.7% 5200
Virginia 3.8% -0.1% -0.2% 0.3% 18 1.1% 44,400 -0.2% -8,800 4.4% 174500
Washington 4.5% -0.4% -1.1% -0.3% 33 2.4% 76,200 0.5% 16,300 9.5% 314100
West Virginia 4.5% -0.7% -1.5% -0.2% 34 -1.0% -7,300 -0.7% -4,900 -2.3% -17200
Wisconsin 3.1% -0.6% -1.0% -1.7% 9 1.4% 40,400 0.2% 6,300 2.7% 79500
Wyoming 4.1% -0.6% -1.5% 1.3% 25 -1.4% -3,900 0.1% 200 -5.9% -16400

Jobs refers to the total number of jobs, part-time or full-time, in non-farm establishments.

Source: EPI analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics' Local Area Unemployment Statistics data

Copy the code below to embed this chart on your website.

When workers lose a job or cannot find work, they and their families lose wages and benefits, and the adverse effects may last a very long time as career trajectories are interrupted. When more workers are unemployed, it also depresses wage growth for those workers who have a job, since employers have little need to raise pay to attract or retain staff. Although the country remains on a positive trend of job growth and falling unemployment, many states still have rates of job growth that are leaving many unable to find work and paychecks failing behind. To ensure workers in every community have access to jobs and rising pay, policymakers should prioritize a full employment agenda.

Data come from the State and Regional Employment report, released monthly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Explore the map to see how these indicators differ across the country and read EPI’s recent research analyzing jobs and unemployment.