The chart above shows the unemployment rate in each US state as of July 2019, the change from the previous month, and the rate one year prior. Vermont continues to be the only state that has an unemployment rate below 2.25 percent.
- The difference between the state with the lowest unemployment rate, Vermont, and the state with the highest, Alaska, is 4.2 percentage points (down from 4.3 last month and same as 4.2 last year). Vermont had the lowest rate last month while Iowa had the lowest rate last year. Alaska had the highest rate in both time periods.
- Alaska has 3.00 times the unemployment rate that Vermont does. The ratio of highest rate to lowest rate was down from 3.05 last month and up from 2.75 last year.
- The median unemployment rate in the 50 US states is 3.40 (down from 3.50 last month and down from 3.75 last year) and the mean 3.59 (down from 3.60 the previous month and down from 3.72 last year).
- Nineteen states did not see a change in their unemployment rate from the previous month, 17 saw an improvement, and 14 saw their rate increase.
- Ten states did not see a change in their unemployment rate from last year, while 27 saw an improvement over the prior year's rate, and 13 saw their unemployment rate increase over the year.
- Data is from July 2019.
- Data may conflict with previous month's report as statistical agencies make updates to the rates over the course of the month.
- All figures are rounded to the nearest hundredth.
In absolute terms, Alabama, Maine, and New Jersey had the greatest improvement over the previous month dropping 0.2 percentage points. Kentucky had the greatest deterioration with an increase of 0.2 percentage points in the unemployment rate. Year over year, Alabama, Louisiana, and New Jersey had the greatest improvement with a 0.7 percentage point drop while Minnesota had the greatest deterioration with a 0.6 percentage point rise in the unemployment rate.
In relative terms, Maine had the greatest improvement over the previous month with a 6.25% drop in its rate while Kentucky had the biggest deterioration with a 4.88% rise in its rate. Year over year, Vermont had the greatest improvement with a 22.22% drop in its rate while Minnesota had the greatest deterioration with a 21.43% rise in its rate.
Thirty-four states have an unemployment rate below four percent (same as 34 last month, up from 30 last year) which traditionally has placed inflationary pressure on wages. Sixteen have a rate between four and eight percent (same as 16 last month, down from 20 last year), and zero have a rate above eight percent (same as last month and last year).
Alabama (from 23rd lowest unemployment rate to 16th lowest) and New Jersey (from 23rd to 16th) each bested seven states between last month and this. On the other hand, Tennessee (from 19th to 28th) was bested by nine states as its rate went from 3.4% to 3.5%. Year-over-year, Alabama (from 31st to 16th) and New Jersey (from 31st to 16th) each surpassed 15 states. Conversely, Minnesota (from 7th to 22nd) was surpassed by 15 states.
|State||Last Year||Previous Rate||Latest Rate|
Bureau of Labor Statistics. 2019. "State Employment and Unemployment (Monthly) News Release." Accessed September 9, 2019. https://www.bls.gov/news.release/laus.htm.