Jobless Rates Up in 25 States, Down in 8 in January, 2013; Payroll Jobs Up in 34 States, Down in 16

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF)—March 18, 2013. Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in January. Twenty-five states and the District of Columbia recorded unemployment rate increases, 8 states posted decreases, and 17 states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Forty states and the District of Columbia registered unemployment rate decreases from a year earlier, seven states experienced increases, and three states had no change. The national jobless rate, 7.9 percent, was essentially unchanged from December but was 0.4 percentage point lower than in January 2012.

In January 2013, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 34 states and the District of Columbia and decreased in 16 states. The largest over-the-month increase in employment occurred in Michigan (+26,500), followed by Washington (+24,100) and Massachusetts (+16,100). The largest over-the-month decrease in employment occurred in Louisiana (-12,500), followed by Wisconsin (-6,000) and Missouri  (-4,700). Delaware experienced the largest over-the-month percentage increase in employment (+1.0 percent), followed by Washington (+0.8 percent) and Michigan (+0.7 percent). Louisiana (-0.6 percent) and Alaska (-0.4 percent) experienced the largest over-the-month percentage declines in employment. Over the year, nonfarm employment increased in 48 states and the District of Columbia and decreased in 2 states. The largest over-the-year percentage increases occurred in North Dakota (+5.4 percent) and Utah (+3.0 percent). The two over-the-year percentage decreases in employment occurred in Maine and West Virginia (less than -0.1 percent each).

Regional Unemployment (Seasonally Adjusted)

In January, the West continued to record the highest regional unemployment rate, 8.6 percent, while the Midwest and South reported the lowest rates, 7.3 percent each. Over the month, the Midwest had the only statistically significant unemployment rate change (+0.1 percentage point). Significant over-the-year rate changes occurred in two regions: the West (-1.1 percentage points) and South (-0.7 point). (See table 1.)

Among the nine geographic divisions, the Pacific continued to report the highest jobless rate, 9.2 percent, in January. The West North Central again registered the lowest rate, 5.5 percent. The East North Central and Middle Atlantic divisions recorded statistically significant over-the-month unemployment rate changes (+0.2 percentage point each). Four divisions had measurable rate changes from a year earlier, all of which were decreases. The largest of these declines occurred in the Pacific division (-1.1 percentage points).

State Unemployment (Seasonally Adjusted)

California and Rhode Island recorded the highest unemployment rates among the states in January, 9.8 percent each. North Dakota again registered the lowest jobless rate, 3.3 percent. In total, 24 states reported jobless rates significantly lower than the U.S. figure of 7.9 percent, 9 states had measurably higher rates, and 17 states and the District of Columbia had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation. (See tables A and 3.)

Nine states reported statistically significant over-the-month unemployment rate changes in January, of which seven were increases and two were decreases. The significant increases occurred in Illinois and Mississippi (+0.4 percentage point each); Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin (+0.3 point each); and New York (+0.2 point). Colorado and Vermont registered the only significant declines over the month (-0.2 percentage point each). The remaining 41 states and the District of Columbia recorded jobless rates that were not measurably different from those of a month earlier, though some had changes that were at least as large numerically as the significant changes.

Nevada registered the largest jobless rate decrease from January 2012 (-2.3 percentage points). Seven additional states reported smaller but also statistically significant decreases over the year: Florida (-1.4 percentage points), Idaho (-1.3 points), California (-1.2 points), Hawaii (-1.1 points), Colorado and Washington (-1.0 point each), and Texas (-0.9 point). The remaining 42 states and the District of Columbia recorded unemployment rates that were not appreciably different from those of a year earlier.

Nonfarm Payroll Employment (Seasonally Adjusted)

In January 2013, 11 states recorded statistically significant over-the-month changes in employment, 10 of which were increases. The largest statistically significant job gains occurred in Michigan (+26,500), Washington (+24,100), and Massachusetts (+16,100). The only statistically significant job decrease occurred in Louisiana (-12,500). (See table B.)

Over the year, 32 states experienced statistically significant changes in employment, all of which were positive. The largest over-the-year job increase occurred in Texas (+310,900), followed by California (+254,900), Florida (+127,500), and New York (+110,600). (See table C.)

To view the Tables referenced above, see: