Friday, September 15, 2017

BLS: Unemployment Rates Unchanged in 41 states in August, Tennessee at New Series Low

by Bill McBride on 9/15/2017 10:28:00 AM

From the BLS: Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary

Unemployment rates were higher in August in 8 states, lower in 1 state, and stable in 41 states and the District of Columbia, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Twenty-one states had jobless rate decreases from a year earlier, 1 state had an increase, and 28 states and the District had little or no change. The national unemployment rate, 4.4 percent, was little changed from July but was 0.5 percentage point lower than in August 2016.
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North Dakota and Colorado had the lowest unemployment rates in August, 2.3 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively. The rate in Tennessee (3.3 percent) set a new series low. (All state series begin in 1976.) Alaska had the highest jobless rate, 7.2 percent.
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State Unemployment Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the current unemployment rate for each state (red), and the max during the recession (blue). All states are well below the maximum unemployment rate for the recession.

The size of the blue bar indicates the amount of improvement.   The yellow squares are the lowest unemployment rate per state since 1976.

Eleven states have reached new all time lows since the end of the 2007 recession.  These eleven states are: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Idaho, Maine, Mississippi, North Dakota, Oregon, Tennessee, Washington, and Wisconsin.

The states are ranked by the highest current unemployment rate. Alaska, at 7.2%, had the highest state unemployment rate.

State UnemploymentThe second graph shows the number of states (and D.C.) with unemployment rates at or above certain levels since January 2006. At the worst of the employment recession, there were 11 states with an unemployment rate at or above 11% (red).

Currently one state has an unemployment rate at or above 7% (light blue); Only two states and D.C. are at or above 6% (dark blue). The states are Alaska (7.2%) and New Mexico (6.3%).  D.C. is at 6.4%.