Economic Indicators

State Jobs Picture

Press release

Updated November 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.

October

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 3.6% -0.9% -2.5% -0.8% 20 1.5% 29,200 0.2% 4,500 -0.1% -1,200
Alaska 7.2% 0.2% 0.6% 0.8% 51 0.1% 300 -0.2% (800) 3.7% 11,900
Arizona 4.5% -0.6% -0.5% 0.1% 36 1.2% 31,500 0.7% 18,600 3.1% 83,000
Arkansas 3.6% 0.2% -0.4% -1.6% 19 1.9% 23,500 -0.1% (900) 4.2% 50,800
California 4.9% 0.1% -0.4% -1.1% 44 1.5% 256,800 0.4% 74,300 8.9% 1,382,500
Colorado 2.7% 0.3% -0.4% -1.4% 5 1.4% 37,800 0.3% 8,100 13.1% 308,500
Connecticut 4.5% -0.5% -0.1% -0.4% 35 0.1% 1,400 -0.6% (10,500) -1.4% -24,700
Delaware 4.8% 0.0% 0.5% 1.1% 40 0.7% 3,200 0.2% 800 3.7% 16,400
Washington D.C. 6.6% 0.2% 0.8% 0.9% 50 0.9% 7,400 -0.3% (2,700) 13.4% 93,700
Florida 3.6% -0.5% -1.3% -1.3% 18 2.3% 197,500 0.3% 25,300 9.1% 723,300
Georgia 4.3% -0.4% -1.1% -0.8% 31 2.0% 87,800 0.4% 19,700 8.1% 339,800
Hawaii 2.2% -0.5% -0.7% -1.0% 1 1.1% 7,100 0.0% (300) 4.8% 30,100
Idaho 2.9% -0.1% -0.8% -0.3% 7 2.4% 16,700 1.1% 7,700 9.6% 62,800
Illinois 4.9% 0.1% -0.9% -0.6% 43 0.3% 17,800 -0.1% (7,100) 0.9% 55,200
Indiana 3.9% 0.8% -0.3% -0.9% 26 0.9% 29,400 0.1% 3,400 4.6% 136,700
Iowa 3.0% -0.2% -0.6% -0.7% 9 0.9% 13,500 -0.1% (1,100) 4.0% 61,500
Kansas 3.6% -0.1% -0.7% -0.7% 17 -0.4% -5,200 0.4% 6,000 1.5% 20,300
Kentucky 5.0% -0.4% 0.1% -0.5% 46 1.5% 28,600 0.5% 10,400 4.9% 91,400
Louisiana 4.8% -0.5% -1.3% 0.7% 39 0.4% 8,600 -0.2% (4,100) 2.2% 42,700
Maine 3.5% -0.2% -0.4% -1.4% 15 0.8% 5,200 -0.5% (3,300) 0.1% 500
Maryland 3.8% -0.2% -0.4% 0.4% 22 2.0% 54,400 0.4% 12,100 5.9% 155,700
Massachusetts 3.7% -0.6% 0.5% -0.9% 21 1.9% 69,000 0.6% 23,100 9.8% 324,700
Michigan 4.5% 0.8% -0.5% -2.8% 34 1.0% 45,100 0.4% 18,900 3.9% 164,600
Minnesota 3.3% -0.4% -0.7% -1.4% 11 1.5% 42,600 -0.1% (3,700) 6.5% 181,300
Mississippi 4.9% -0.3% -0.8% -1.0% 42 0.6% 6,500 0.0% 100 -0.6% -6,700
Missouri 3.5% -0.3% -1.1% -1.9% 14 1.1% 30,700 -0.3% (9,400) 3.2% 88,700
Montana 3.9% 0.0% -0.1% -0.3% 25 1.2% 5,800 0.5% 2,200 6.5% 29,000
Nebraska 2.7% -0.1% -0.6% -0.3% 4 1.0% 9,800 -0.2% (2,200) 6.2% 59,800
Nevada 5.0% 0.2% -0.3% -0.1% 45 2.8% 36,600 0.5% 6,700 4.6% 59,800
New Hampshire 2.7% -0.1% -0.1% -0.8% 3 0.9% 6,300 0.0% 200 4.8% 30,900
New Jersey 4.9% 0.7% 0.1% 0.3% 41 0.7% 30,000 -0.1% (3,500) 1.0% 39,600
New Mexico 6.1% -0.2% -0.7% 2.1% 49 1.6% 13,200 1.3% 10,500 -0.6% -5,200
New York 4.8% 0.1% -0.1% -0.1% 38 1.1% 102,600 -0.3% (24,400) 8.6% 754,100
North Carolina 4.1% 0.0% -1.0% -0.9% 27 1.7% 75,200 0.6% 24,700 6.5% 271,100
North Dakota 2.5% 0.2% -0.5% -0.6% 2 0.6% 2,600 -0.7% (3,300) 21.0% 76,000
Ohio 5.1% -0.1% 0.1% -0.6% 48 1.1% 59,400 0.2% 10,900 2.5% 132,800
Oklahoma 4.4% 0.0% -0.5% 0.8% 32 1.2% 20,200 0.4% 7,100 4.1% 65,700
Oregon 4.3% 0.5% -0.4% -1.0% 30 2.5% 46,300 0.2% 3,500 8.8% 153,500
Pennsylvania 4.7% -0.3% -0.8% -0.1% 37 1.1% 65,800 0.2% 12,100 2.8% 162,300
Rhode Island 4.2% -0.1% -0.9% -1.9% 29 0.9% 4,600 -0.8% (3,900) 1.6% 8,000
South Carolina 3.9% 0.0% -0.5% -1.8% 24 2.1% 42,500 0.7% 13,800 7.9% 153,200
South Dakota 3.5% 0.4% 0.6% 0.8% 13 0.1% 600 -0.2% (800) 6.5% 26,700
Tennessee 3.0% -0.4% -2.0% -2.5% 8 1.2% 34,800 0.1% 4,000 7.8% 218,800
Texas 3.9% -0.4% -0.9% -0.4% 23 2.6% 316,100 0.5% 66,500 17.4% 1,832,600
Utah 3.3% -0.2% 0.1% 0.3% 10 2.7% 39,000 0.9% 13,300 17.1% 216,500
Vermont 2.9% -0.2% -0.3% -1.3% 6 1.0% 3200 0.2% 500 2.8% 8,600
Virginia 3.6% -0.2% -0.5% 0.1% 16 0.9% 33,700 -0.1% (5,900) 5.2% 196,100
Washington 4.5% 0.0% -0.8% -0.3% 33 2.1% 68,500 0.6% 21,300 11.6% 346,300
West Virginia 5.1% 0.4% -0.8% 0.4% 47 0.4% 3200 0.2% 1,400 -1.5% -11,500
Wisconsin 3.4% 0.2% -0.8% -1.4% 12 1.4% 42,400 0.5% 15,600 3.3% 94,900
Wyoming 4.2% 0.2% -0.8% 1.4% 28 -0.5% -1,400 -0.5% (1,400) -6.4% -18,700

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.