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BLS: State unemployment rates were “little changed” in May

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From the BLS: Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in May

Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in May. Twenty-five states had unemployment rate decreases, 17 states had increases, and 8 states and the District of Columbia had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.

Nevada had the highest unemployment rate among the states in May, 9.5 percent. The next highest rates were in Illinois and Mississippi, 9.1 percent each. North Dakota again had the lowest jobless rate, 3.2 percent.

State Unemployment Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

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

The size of the blue bar indicates the amount of improvement – Michigan and Nevada have seen the largest declines and many other states have seen significant declines (California, Florida and more).

The states are ranked by the highest current unemployment rate. No state has double digit unemployment and the unemployment rate is at or above 9% in only three states: Nevada, Illinois, and Mississippi.  This is the fewest states with 9% unemployment since 2008.

For some of the sand states (largest real estate bubble states), the improvement has been significant. The unemployment rate in California has declined from 10.7% in May 2012 to 8.6% in May 2013. The unemployment rate in Florida has declined from 8.8% in May 2012 to 7.1% in May 2013. For Arizona, the unemployment rate has declined from 8.4% to 7.8%, and for Nevada from 11.5% to 9.5%.

State UnemploymentThe second graph shows the number of states with unemployment rates above certain levels since January 2006. At the worst of the employment recession, there were 9 states with an unemployment rate above 11% (red).

Currently only three states have an unemployment rate above 9% (purple), fifteen states above 8% (light blue), and 24 states above 7% (blue).
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