Jobless Rate Down in 26 States, Up in 7 in March, 2013; Payroll Jobs Down in 26 States, Up in 23

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF)—April 19, 2013. Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in March. Twenty-six states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate decreases, 7 states had increases, and 17 states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Thirty-nine states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate decreases from a year earlier, eight states had increases, and three states had no change. The national jobless rate was little changed from February at 7.6 percent but was 0.6 percentage point lower than in March 2012.

In March 2013, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 23 states, decreased in 26 states and the District of Columbia, and was unchanged in New Mexico. The largest over-the-month increases in employment occurred in Florida (+32,700) and California (+25,500). The largest over-the-month decrease in employment occurred in Ohio (-20,400), followed by Illinois (-17,800). Utah had the largest over-the-month percentage increase in employment (+0.5 percent), followed by Florida and Wyoming (+0.4 percent each). Delaware and Kentucky had the largest over-the-month percentage declines in employment (-0.7 percent and -0.5 percent, respectively). Over the year, nonfarm employment increased in 49 states and the District of Columbia and decreased in 1 state. The largest over-the-year percentage increases occurred in North Dakota (+4.4 percent) and Utah (+4.2 percent). The only over-the-year percentage decrease in employment occurred in Pennsylvania (-0.1 percent).

Regional Unemployment (Seasonally Adjusted)

In March, the West continued to have the highest regional unemployment rate, 8.3 percent, while the South again had the lowest rate, 7.2 percent. Over the month, two regions had statistically significant unemployment rate changes: the Northeast and West (-0.2 percentage point each). Significant over-the-year rate changes occurred in two regions: the West (-1.2 percentage points) and South (-0.6 point). (See table 1.)

Among the nine geographic divisions, the Pacific continued to have the highest jobless rate, 8.8 percent in March. The West North Central again had the lowest rate, 5.4 percent. Three divisions had statistically significant over-the-month unemployment rate changes: the Pacific (-0.3 percentage point) and the Middle Atlantic and South Atlantic (-0.2 point each). Four divisions had significant rate changes from a year earlier, all of which were decreases. The largest of these declines occurred in the Pacific (-1.3 percentage points).

State Unemployment (Seasonally Adjusted)

Nevada had the highest unemployment rate among the states in March, 9.7 percent. The next highest rates were in Illinois (9.5 percent) and California and Mississippi (9.4 percent each). North Dakota again had the lowest jobless rate, 3.3 percent. In total, 21 states had jobless rates significantly lower than the U.S. figure of 7.6 percent, 11 states and the District of Columbia had measurably higher rates, and 18 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation. (See tables A and 3.)

Thirteen states had statistically significant over-the-month unemployment rate changes in March, all of which were declines. The largest of these occurred in Alaska, Florida, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia (-0.3 percentage point each). The remaining 37 states and the District of Columbia had 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. (See table B.)

Nevada had the largest jobless rate decline from March 2012 (-1.9 percentage points). Ten additional states had smaller but also statistically significant decreases over the year. The remaining 39 states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rates that were not appreciably different from those of a year earlier. (See table C.)

Nonfarm Payroll Employment (Seasonally Adjusted)

In March 2013, 11 states recorded statistically significant over-the-month changes in employment, 4 of which were increases. The largest statistically significant job gains occurred in Florida (+32,700), California (+25,500), and Georgia (+13,600). The largest statistically significant job decreases occurred in Ohio (-20,400), Illinois (-17,800), and Indiana (-12,400). (See table D.)

Over the year, 29 states had statistically significant changes in employment, all of which were positive. The largest over-the-year job increase occurred in Texas (+329,500), followed by California (+285,900) and Florida (+141,300). (See table E.)

To view the tables referenced above, see:  http://www.bls.gov/news.release/laus.nr0.htm

Source: bls.gov