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Vermont Wins the Unemployment Race in April

Unemployment rates were lower in April in 10 states and stable in 40 states and…

  • June 4, 2019

Unemployment rates were lower in April in 10 states and stable in 40 states and the District of Columbia, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report.

Four states had jobless rate decreases from a year earlier, 1 state had an increase, and 45 states and the District had little or no change.

The national unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point from March to 3.6 percent and was 0.3 point lower than in April 2018.

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 10 states in April 2019, decreased in 1 state, and was essentially unchanged in 39 states and the District of Columbia.

Over the year, 29 states added nonfarm payroll jobs and 21 states and the District were essentially unchanged.

Vermont had the lowest unemployment rate in April, 2.2 percent.

The rates in Pennsylvania (3.8 percent), Vermont (2.2 percent), and Wisconsin (2.8 percent) set new series lows. (All state series begin in 1976.)

Alaska had the highest jobless rate, 6.5 percent. In total, 12 states had unemployment rates lower than the U.S. figure of 3.6 percent, 11 states and the District of Columbia had higher rates, and 27 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.

In April, 10 states had unemployment rate decreases, the largest of which were in Louisiana, Nevada, New Jersey, and West Virginia (-0.2 percentage point each).

The remaining 40 states and the District of Columbia had jobless rates that were not notably different from those of a month earlier, though some had changes that were at least as large numerically as the significant changes.

Four states had unemployment rate decreases from April 2018. The largest decline was in Delaware (-0.7 percentage point), followed by Vermont (-0.5 point), New York (-0.4 point), and North Dakota (-0.3 point). The only unemployment rate increase over the year occurred in Hawaii (+0.5 percentage point).