Economic Indicators

State Jobs Picture

Updated March 2019

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 February 2020 State unemployment rate raking 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 numbers of jobs in last 3 months Change in number of jobs in last 3 months Percent change in number of jobs since February 2020 Change in number of jobs since February 2020
Alabama 5.8% -2.1% 3.1% 3.1% 23 -2.4% -49100 2.7% 54200 -2.8% -57900
Alaska 5.9% -5.7% -0.2% 0.1% 24 -6.4% -21100 6.0% 17600 -6.2% -20500
Arizona 8.0% -2.7% 3.5% 3.5% 43 -2.5% -73200 1.8% 51000 -3.4% -100700
Arkansas 6.2% -0.9% 2.7% 2.7% 28 -3.3% -41700 1.8% 22400 -3.6% -45700
California 9.3% -4.2% 5.4% 5.4% 47 -7.8% -1369400 2.3% 361700 -8.4% -1470300
Colorado 6.4% -1.0% 3.9% 3.9% 31 -4.0% -111600 2.9% 75400 -4.5% -125300
Connecticut 6.1% -4.1% 2.3% 2.3% 27 -5.3% -89800 3.5% 54000 -5.8% -99300
Delaware 5.6% -4.9% 1.6% 1.7% 21 -7.8% -36400 2.0% 8400 -9.0% -42300
Washington D.C. 8.2% -0.3% 2.9% 3.1% 46 -6.4% -51300 0.3% 2600 -6.8% -54600
Florida 6.5% -4.9% 3.6% 3.7% 32 -4.5% -407600 1.5% 126000 -5.3% -478400
Georgia 4.5% -3.1% 1.3% 1.4% 8 -3.0% -136600 1.9% 82200 -3.4% -158600
Hawaii 14.3% 0.8% 11.6% 11.6% 51 -17.3% -113700 -1.1% -6300 -17.6% -115500
Idaho 5.5% 0.4% 2.6% 2.8% 19 0.0% 300 1.6% 12000 -1.1% -8600
Illinois 6.8% -4.7% 3.1% 3.4% 33 -6.7% -411800 1.3% 75300 -6.8% -417300
Indiana 5.0% -2.9% 1.8% 1.9% 13 -3.2% -101200 1.6% 47700 -3.9% -123200
Iowa 3.6% -3.2% 0.8% 0.8% 4 -4.7% -75100 1.7% 25100 -4.3% -68500
Kansas 5.3% -1.9% 2.2% 2.2% 15 -3.7% -53000 1.0% 13100 -4.6% -65400
Kentucky 7.4% 2.9% 3.1% 3.2% 41 -5.5% -107100 2.6% 46700 -5.6% -108800
Louisiana 9.4% 0.0% 4.2% 4.2% 48 -5.3% -105800 2.2% 40500 -5.9% -117800
Maine 5.4% -4.5% 2.4% 2.2% 16 -7.7% -49000 2.3% 13300 -7.5% -48100
Maryland 7.8% 0.0% 4.4% 4.5% 42 -5.4% -150200 1.8% 47300 -6.5% -182000
Massachusetts 7.4% -8.8% 4.6% 4.6% 40 -9.2% -340200 3.4% 110300 -9.7% -359700
Michigan 5.5% -3.2% 1.6% 1.9% 18 -8.6% -381200 2.4% 93700 -9.6% -428100
Minnesota 4.6% -3.0% 1.3% 1.5% 10 -6.3% -188200 2.5% 68100 -6.2% -184200
Mississippi 7.4% -2.0% 1.8% 2.0% 39 -2.5% -28800 1.2% 13900 -2.7% -31500
Missouri 4.6% -2.3% 1.2% 1.1% 9 -4.2% -121800 0.7% 19400 -4.4% -129400
Montana 4.9% -1.6% 1.4% 1.4% 12 -3.0% -14400 2.0% 9200 -3.9% -19200
Nebraska 3.0% -1.9% 0.0% 0.1% 1 -2.5% -25900 1.7% 16800 -3.2% -33000
Nevada 12.0% -2.2% 8.3% 8.4% 50 -8.2% -117200 1.7% 22000 -8.5% -121000
New Hampshire 4.2% -3.8% 1.6% 1.6% 7 -8.2% -56400 1.2% 7600 -9.0% -62400
New Jersey 8.2% -6.0% 4.5% 4.4% 45 -7.7% -324600 3.5% 132900 -8.4% -355000
New Mexico 8.1% -4.6% 3.3% 3.3% 44 -6.5% -56300 2.0% 15700 -7.2% -62500
New York 9.6% -6.3% 5.7% 5.9% 49 -10.4% -1015500 4.1% 347700 -10.8% -1064000
North Carolina 6.3% -2.2% 2.6% 2.7% 29 -5.2% -238200 2.4% 100300 -5.8% -265600
North Dakota 4.8% -1.8% 2.4% 2.6% 11 -6.4% -28200 1.4% 5700 -7.0% -30700
Ohio 5.6% -3.4% 1.5% 1.5% 20 -6.3% -353600 2.4% 120600 -6.7% -376800
Oklahoma 6.1% -1.0% 2.7% 2.9% 26 -4.9% -83100 0.8% 13600 -4.5% -76600
Oregon 6.9% -3.5% 3.5% 3.6% 35 -6.0% -117600 2.2% 39700 -6.4% -125500
Pennsylvania 7.3% -5.2% 2.7% 2.6% 37 -7.5% -455900 1.9% 103700 -8.0% -487500
Rhode Island 7.0% -4.3% 3.5% 3.6% 36 -7.2% -36300 2.0% 9100 -7.9% -40000
South Carolina 4.2% -4.5% 1.8% 1.7% 6 -3.5% -77700 2.5% 52300 -4.2% -92300
South Dakota 3.6% -2.8% 0.2% 0.3% 3 -3.2% -14100 2.2% 9200 -3.6% -15900
Tennessee 7.4% -2.3% 4.1% 4.0% 38 -3.5% -108800 2.1% 63600 -4.1% -131000
Texas 6.9% -1.1% 3.4% 3.4% 34 -3.9% -499200 2.3% 278100 -4.8% -626100
Utah 4.1% -0.4% 1.7% 1.6% 5 -0.6% -9000 2.2% 33100 -1.4% -21500
Vermont 3.2% -5.1% 0.8% 0.8% 2 -9.3% -29500 3.0% 8300 -8.7% -27400
Virginia 5.3% -2.6% 2.6% 2.7% 14 -4.1% -164800 3.1% 116600 -4.9% -201100
Washington 6.0% -4.2% 2.0% 2.2% 25 -5.5% -190600 2.0% 65400 -6.5% -227500
West Virginia 6.4% -3.6% 1.3% 1.5% 30 -6.5% -47000 0.3% 2000 -5.7% -40500
Wisconsin 5.7% -1.4% 2.2% 2.2% 22 -6.9% -205000 1.7% 47200 -7.5% -226000
Wyoming 5.5% -1.6% 1.8% 1.8% 17 -4.7% -13600 2.5% 6600 -4.4% -12600

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

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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 falling 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.