Press Releases

News from EPI The unemployment rate fell in most states in 2018: 44 states and the District of Columbia showed job gains in December

The State and Regional Employment report for December, released on this morning by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), showed continued job gains in 44 states and the District of Columbia, with six states experiencing job losses. Additionally, in 38 states and the District of Columbia the unemployment rate either declined or held steady.

“In 2018, the unemployment rate fell in 41 states and the District of Columbia, and the economy added 220,000 jobs every month on average,” said Economic Analyst Jessica Schieder. “This is good news, but 2019 could potentially bring  tighter Fed policy and slower government spending. With any boost from the tax cuts behind us, these factors could rein in growth even as workers are still continuing to rejoin the labor market.”

From September to December, 48 states and the District of Columbia added jobs, with South Carolina (1.7 percent), Nevada (1.4 percent), South Dakota (1.1 percent), Wyoming (1.0 percent), and Alabama (0.9 percent) having the highest percent change in job growth. Over the last three months, the number of jobs fell in two states, Alaska (-0.3 percent) and Maine (-0.2 percent).

From July to October, unemployment rates fell in 26 states and the District of Columbia. Delaware (-0.3 percentage points), Maryland (-0.3 percentage points), Massachusetts (-0.3 percentage points), and Oklahoma (-0.3 percentage points) saw the largest declines in unemployment rates. The unemployment rate increased in 12 states. The largest increases in unemployment rates occurred in Colorado (0.4 percentage points), Hawaii (0.3 percentage points), and Oregon (0.3 percentage points).

December

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 3.9% -0.2% 0.1% -0.4% 29 2.2% 43,600 0.9% 17,600 1.6% 32,600
Alaska 6.3% -0.2% -0.9% -0.1% 51 -0.1% -400 -0.3% -1100 2.2% 7,100
Arizona 4.8% 0.2% 0.1% 0.5% 47 3.4% 94,100 0.5% 13,900 7.8% 209,700
Arkansas 3.6% 0.1% -0.1% -1.5% 21 1.4% 17,100 0.2% 2,600 4.0% 48,700
California 4.2% 0.1% -0.3% -1.7% 38 1.7% 284,300 0.5% 87,000 11.7% 1,807,300
Colorado 3.5% 0.4% 0.5% -0.6% 20 2.8% 75,400 0.7% 19,900 17.5% 412,000
Connecticut 4.0% -0.2% -0.5% -0.9% 33 1.2% 19,900 0.3% 5,100 0.0% 200
Delaware 3.7% -0.3% -0.8% 0.0% 26 2.2% 10,200 0.6% 2,700 5.6% 24,800
Washington D.C. 5.5% -0.2% -0.4% -0.1% 50 0.3% 2300 0.1% 800 13.7% 96,200
Florida 3.3% -0.2% -0.6% -1.4% 15 2.7% 231,200 0.7% 61,700 12.1% 959,500
Georgia 3.6% -0.1% -0.9% -1.4% 22 2.5% 113,800 0.6% 27,600 10.3% 430,700
Hawaii 2.5% 0.3% 0.4% -0.6% 2 1.4% 9,500 0.3% 2,100 6.2% 38,800
Idaho 2.6% -0.1% -0.4% -0.5% 4 2.0% 14,500 0.6% 4100 13.2% 86,400
Illinois 4.3% 0.2% -0.6% -1.1% 40 1.2% 71,000 0.5% 28,400 2.8% 167,000
Indiana 3.6% 0.1% 0.2% -1.1% 23 1.4% 44,500 0.7% 23,400 5.5% 166,100
Iowa 2.4% -0.1% -0.5% -1.3% 1 1.0% 15,500 0.4% 6700 4.8% 72,900
Kansas 3.3% 0.0% -0.2% -1.0% 16 1.4% 20,100 0.4% 6,400 3.2% 44,600
Kentucky 4.4% -0.1% -0.1% -1.0% 42 1.1% 21,300 0.6% 11,100 4.7% 87,300
Louisiana 4.9% -0.1% 0.2% 0.7% 48 1.1% 21,900 0.1% 2,500 2.9% 56,900
Maine 3.4% 0.1% 0.3% -1.4% 19 0.7% 4,300 -0.2% -1000 1.2% 7,400
Maryland 3.9% -0.3% -0.2% 0.6% 30 1.9% 50,900 0.6% 16,100 5.8% 151,200
Massachusetts 3.3% -0.3% -0.2% -1.3% 17 1.8% 65,800 0.4% 15,300 11.3% 375,600
Michigan 4.0% 0.0% -0.7% -3.2% 34 1.3% 55,000 0.3% 11,800 4.8% 203,400
Minnesota 2.8% 0.0% -0.5% -1.9% 7 1.1% 32,200 0.0% 1,200 7.4% 206,300
Mississippi 4.7% -0.1% -0.1% -1.1% 45 0.9% 11,000 0.4% 4,900 1.1% 12,600
Missouri 3.1% -0.1% -0.6% -2.3% 12 1.4% 39,000 0.2% 6,400 4.2% 117,300
Montana 3.7% 0.1% -0.4% -0.5% 27 1.0% 4,700 0.4% 1,800 7.8% 35,000
Nebraska 2.8% 0.0% -0.1% -0.2% 8 1.2% 12,700 0.0% 500 6.8% 66,200
Nevada 4.4% -0.1% -0.5% -0.6% 43 3.9% 52,400 1.4% 19,400 9.3% 119,600
New Hampshire 2.5% -0.2% -0.1% -1.0% 3 2.7% 18,100 0.7% 5,100 7.1% 46,300
New Jersey 4.0% -0.2% -0.7% -0.5% 35 1.5% 61,900 0.3% 12,800 3.0% 124,400
New Mexico 4.7% 0.1% -1.3% 0.8% 46 2.4% 19,900 0.4% 3,100 0.8% 6,500
New York 3.9% -0.2% -0.8% -0.9% 31 1.3% 121,900 0.5% 48,100 10.6% 925,600
North Carolina 3.6% -0.2% -0.9% -1.3% 24 2.0% 87,200 0.6% 25,400 8.9% 371,700
North Dakota 2.7% 0.0% 0.1% -0.3% 5 2.1% 9,000 0.0% 200 20.2% 73,200
Ohio 4.6% 0.0% -0.3% -1.0% 44 2.1% 116,500 0.3% 14,500 4.3% 232,700
Oklahoma 3.2% -0.3% -0.9% -0.4% 13 1.5% 25,500 0.2% 3,700 6.0% 96,900
Oregon 4.1% 0.3% 0.0% -1.2% 36 1.9% 35,100 0.3% 4,900 11.2% 194,000
Pennsylvania 4.2% 0.1% -0.6% -0.5% 39 1.2% 74,800 0.4% 23,500 4.4% 256,800
Rhode Island 3.9% 0.0% -0.6% -2.1% 32 1.4% 7,100 0.5% 2400 3.5% 17,200
South Carolina 3.3% 0.0% -0.9% -2.3% 18 2.0% 41,200 1.7% 36,100 10.4% 202,200
South Dakota 2.9% -0.1% -0.5% 0.2% 10 2.0% 8,800 1.1% 4,700 9.5% 38,800
Tennessee 3.6% 0.0% 0.3% -1.8% 25 2.0% 59,100 0.3% 7,700 10.0% 281,800
Texas 3.7% -0.1% -0.3% -0.6% 28 3.2% 391,800 0.7% 90,700 20.7% 2,182,000
Utah 3.2% 0.0% 0.0% 0.3% 14 3.1% 46,400 0.8% 11,900 21.5% 271,500
Vermont 2.7% -0.2% -0.2% -1.5% 6 -0.1% -200 0.2% 600 1.6% 4,800
Virginia 2.8% -0.1% -0.8% -0.5% 9 1.9% 77,000 0.2% 6,100 6.7% 254,100
Washington 4.3% -0.1% -0.4% -0.4% 41 3.1% 104,000 0.8% 26,400 15.9% 477,600
West Virginia 5.1% -0.1% -0.3% 0.5% 49 0.6% 4,700 0.2% 1,300 -0.9% -6,900
Wisconsin 3.0% 0.0% -0.2% -1.7% 11 1.6% 48,300 0.7% 19,400 4.3% 123,900
Wyoming 4.1% 0.0% 0.0% 1.3% 37 2.8% 8,000 1.0% 2,800 -1.2% -3,600

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