Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Friday, June 17, 2016                           USDL-16-1199

Technical information:
 Employment:    (202) 691-6559  *  sminfo@bls.gov    *  www.bls.gov/sae
 Unemployment:  (202) 691-6392  *  lausinfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/lau

Media contact:  (202) 691-5902  *  PressOffice@bls.gov


        REGIONAL AND STATE EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT -- MAY 2016


Unemployment rates were significantly higher in May in 5 states, lower in 4 states and
the District of Columbia, and stable in 41 states, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
reported today. Sixteen states and the District had notable unemployment rate decreases
from a year earlier, 2 states had increases, and 32 states had no significant change.
The national jobless rate declined by 0.3 percentage point from April to 4.7 percent
and was 0.8 point lower than in May 2015.

Nonfarm payroll employment decreased in 4 states in May 2016, increased in 3 states
and the District of Columbia, and was essentially unchanged in 43 states. Over the
year, 32 states and the District added appreciable numbers of nonfarm payroll jobs,
2 states lost jobs, and 16 states were essentially unchanged.

Regional Unemployment

In May, the only region with an unemployment rate significantly different from that
of the U.S. was the West at 5.1 percent. Over the month, the South had the only
statistically significant unemployment rate change (-0.1 percentage point).
Significant over-the-year rate decreases occurred in three regions: the West
(-0.8 percentage point), Northeast (-0.6 point), and South (-0.5 point). 
(See table 1.)

Among the nine geographic divisions, the West North Central had the lowest unemployment
rate, 3.8 percent in May. The East North Central had the highest rate, 5.3 percent,
closely followed by the Pacific, 5.2 percent. Over the month, the South Atlantic had
the only statistically significant jobless rate decline (-0.2 percentage point), while
the Mountain had the only notable rate increase (+0.1 point). Seven of the 9 divisions
had significant rate changes from a year earlier, all of which were declines. The
largest of these decreases occurred in the Pacific (-1.0 percentage point).

State Unemployment

South Dakota and New Hampshire had the lowest jobless rates in May, 2.5 percent and 2.7
percent, respectively. The rate in Arkansas (3.8 percent) set a new series low. (All
region, division, and state series begin in 1976.) Alaska had the highest unemployment
rate, 6.7 percent. In total, 16 states had unemployment rates significantly lower than
the U.S. figure of 4.7 percent, 15 states and the District of Columbia had higher
rates, and 19 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the
nation. (See tables A and 3.)

In May, five states had statistically significant unemployment rate increases. The
largest of these increases occurred in Colorado and Nevada (+0.3 percentage point
each). Four states and the District of Columbia had notable rate decreases, the largest
of which were in North Carolina and the District (-0.3 percentage point each). The 
remaining 41 states had jobless rates that were not significantly 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.)

Sixteen states and the District of Columbia had statistically significant unemployment
rate decreases from May 2015. The largest declines were in Tennessee (-1.7 percentage
points) and Arkansas (-1.6 points). The only significant over-the-year rate increases
occurred in Wyoming (+1.4 percentage points) and North Dakota (+0.4 point). (See
table C.)

Nonfarm Payroll Employment

In May 2016, four states had statistically significant over-the-month decreases
in nonfarm payroll employment and three states and the District of Columbia had
significant increases. The job losses were in Tennessee (-13,400), Michigan
(-12,700), New Hampshire (-4,000), and Montana (-2,700). In percentage terms,
Montana and New Hampshire had the largest declines (-0.6 percent each), followed
by Tennessee (-0.5 percent) and Michigan (-0.3 percent). The significant employment
increases were in Florida (+24,500), Washington (+8,700), the District (+6,800),
and West Virginia (+6,600). In percentage terms, the largest increases were in the
District and West Virginia (+0.9 percent each), followed by Florida and Washington
(+0.3 percent each). (See tables D and 5.)

Thirty-two states and the District of Columbia had statistically significant over-the-year
increases in nonfarm payroll employment in May. The largest job gains occurred in
California (+440,300), Florida (+253,900), and Texas (+171,800). The largest percentage
gains were in Oregon (+3.4 percent) and Utah (+3.3 percent), followed by Florida, Idaho,
and Washington (+3.2 percent each). Two states had significant over-the-year declines in
employment: North Dakota (-15,600, or -3.4 percent) and Wyoming (-8,800, or -3.0 percent).
(See table E.)

_____________
The Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment news release for May is scheduled
to be released on Wednesday, June 29, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT). The Regional and
State Employment and Unemployment news release for June is scheduled to be released
on Friday, July 22, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT).


Table A. States with unemployment rates significantly different
from that of the U.S., May 2016, seasonally adjusted
--------------------------------------------------------------
                State                |          Rate(p)
--------------------------------------------------------------
United States (1) ...................|           4.7
                                     |
Alabama .............................|           6.1
Alaska ..............................|           6.7
Arizona .............................|           5.6
Arkansas ............................|           3.8
California ..........................|           5.2
Colorado ............................|           3.4
Connecticut .........................|           5.7
District of Columbia ................|           6.1
Hawaii ..............................|           3.2
Idaho ...............................|           3.7
                                     |
Illinois ............................|           6.4
Iowa ................................|           3.9
Kansas ..............................|           3.7
Louisiana ...........................|           6.3
Maine ...............................|           3.5
Minnesota ...........................|           3.8
Mississippi .........................|           5.8
Montana .............................|           4.2
Nebraska ............................|           3.0
Nevada ..............................|           6.1
                                     |
New Hampshire .......................|           2.7
New Mexico ..........................|           6.2
North Dakota ........................|           3.2
Pennsylvania ........................|           5.5
South Carolina ......................|           5.6
South Dakota ........................|           2.5
Utah ................................|           3.8
Vermont .............................|           3.1
Virginia ............................|           3.8
Washington ..........................|           5.8
West Virginia .......................|           6.2
Wyoming .............................|           5.6
--------------------------------------------------------------
   1 Data are not preliminary.
   p = preliminary.


Table B. States with statistically significant unemployment rate changes
from April 2016 to May 2016, seasonally adjusted
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                |          Rate         |
                                |-----------|-----------| Over-the-month
             State              |   April   |    May    |    change(p)
                                |    2016   |  2016(p)  |
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Colorado .......................|     3.1   |     3.4   |       0.3
District of Columbia ...........|     6.4   |     6.1   |       -.3
Florida ........................|     4.8   |     4.7   |       -.1
Georgia ........................|     5.5   |     5.3   |       -.2
Maryland .......................|     4.6   |     4.5   |       -.1
Nevada .........................|     5.8   |     6.1   |        .3
New Jersey .....................|     4.7   |     4.9   |        .2
North Carolina .................|     5.4   |     5.1   |       -.3
Pennsylvania ...................|     5.3   |     5.5   |        .2
Utah ...........................|     3.7   |     3.8   |        .1
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
   p = preliminary.


Table C. States with statistically significant unemployment rate changes
from May 2015 to May 2016, seasonally adjusted
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                |          Rate         |
                                |-----------|-----------|  Over-the-year
             State              |    May    |    May    |    change(p)
                                |    2015   |  2016(p)  |
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Arkansas .......................|     5.4   |     3.8   |      -1.6
California .....................|     6.4   |     5.2   |      -1.2
Delaware .......................|     4.9   |     4.1   |       -.8
District of Columbia ...........|     7.0   |     6.1   |       -.9
Florida ........................|     5.4   |     4.7   |       -.7
Georgia ........................|     5.9   |     5.3   |       -.6
Maine ..........................|     4.5   |     3.5   |      -1.0
Maryland .......................|     5.2   |     4.5   |       -.7
New Hampshire ..................|     3.5   |     2.7   |       -.8
New Jersey .....................|     5.8   |     4.9   |       -.9
                                |           |           |
New York .......................|     5.4   |     4.7   |       -.7
North Dakota ...................|     2.8   |     3.2   |        .4
Oregon .........................|     5.8   |     4.5   |      -1.3
South Dakota ...................|     3.2   |     2.5   |       -.7
Tennessee ......................|     5.8   |     4.1   |      -1.7
Vermont ........................|     3.7   |     3.1   |       -.6
Virginia .......................|     4.5   |     3.8   |       -.7
West Virginia ..................|     7.1   |     6.2   |       -.9
Wyoming ........................|     4.2   |     5.6   |       1.4
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
   p = preliminary.


Table D. States with statistically significant employment changes from April 2016
to May 2016, seasonally adjusted
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              |     April   |     May     | Over-the-month change(p)
           State              |             |             |---------------------------
                              |     2016    |    2016(p)  |    Level    |   Percent
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
District of Columbia .........|     777,900 |     784,700 |       6,800 |        0.9
Florida ......................|   8,287,700 |   8,312,200 |      24,500 |         .3
Michigan .....................|   4,331,100 |   4,318,400 |     -12,700 |        -.3
Montana ......................|     466,400 |     463,700 |      -2,700 |        -.6
New Hampshire ................|     665,100 |     661,100 |      -4,000 |        -.6
Tennessee ....................|   2,952,200 |   2,938,800 |     -13,400 |        -.5
Washington ...................|   3,237,400 |   3,246,100 |       8,700 |         .3
West Virginia ................|     761,200 |     767,800 |       6,600 |         .9
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   p = preliminary.


Table E. States with statistically significant employment changes from May 2015
to May 2016, seasonally adjusted
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              |     May     |     May     | Over-the-year change(p)
           State              |             |             |---------------------------
                              |     2015    |    2016(p)  |    Level    |    Percent
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Alabama ......................|   1,945,900 |   1,967,000 |      21,100 |         1.1
Arizona ......................|   2,616,700 |   2,692,400 |      75,700 |         2.9
Arkansas .....................|   1,204,100 |   1,226,200 |      22,100 |         1.8
California ...................|  15,966,800 |  16,407,100 |     440,300 |         2.8
Colorado .....................|   2,531,300 |   2,593,300 |      62,000 |         2.4
Delaware .....................|     447,300 |     458,300 |      11,000 |         2.5
District of Columbia .........|     767,000 |     784,700 |      17,700 |         2.3
Florida ......................|   8,058,300 |   8,312,200 |     253,900 |         3.2
Georgia ......................|   4,245,900 |   4,370,500 |     124,600 |         2.9
Hawaii .......................|     634,600 |     648,300 |      13,700 |         2.2
                              |             |             |             |       
Idaho ........................|     670,600 |     692,100 |      21,500 |         3.2
Illinois .....................|   5,958,400 |   6,004,800 |      46,400 |          .8
Indiana ......................|   3,028,600 |   3,067,300 |      38,700 |         1.3
Iowa .........................|   1,559,900 |   1,577,900 |      18,000 |         1.2
Maryland .....................|   2,658,800 |   2,707,400 |      48,600 |         1.8
Massachusetts ................|   3,492,500 |   3,545,900 |      53,400 |         1.5
Michigan .....................|   4,238,500 |   4,318,400 |      79,900 |         1.9
Minnesota ....................|   2,858,300 |   2,888,600 |      30,300 |         1.1
Nebraska .....................|   1,002,900 |   1,019,400 |      16,500 |         1.6
Nevada .......................|   1,253,400 |   1,278,500 |      25,100 |         2.0
                              |             |             |             |       
New Jersey ...................|   4,018,100 |   4,066,100 |      48,000 |         1.2
New York .....................|   9,242,200 |   9,332,000 |      89,800 |         1.0
North Carolina ...............|   4,229,600 |   4,307,700 |      78,100 |         1.8
North Dakota .................|     454,900 |     439,300 |     -15,600 |        -3.4
Ohio .........................|   5,415,900 |   5,486,800 |      70,900 |         1.3
Oregon .......................|   1,770,600 |   1,830,100 |      59,500 |         3.4
Pennsylvania .................|   5,831,800 |   5,871,000 |      39,200 |          .7
South Carolina ...............|   1,996,400 |   2,043,700 |      47,300 |         2.4
Tennessee ....................|   2,877,900 |   2,938,800 |      60,900 |         2.1
Texas ........................|  11,801,900 |  11,973,700 |     171,800 |         1.5
                              |             |             |             |       
Utah .........................|   1,371,500 |   1,416,500 |      45,000 |         3.3
Virginia .....................|   3,834,500 |   3,902,400 |      67,900 |         1.8
Washington ...................|   3,145,300 |   3,246,100 |     100,800 |         3.2
Wisconsin ....................|   2,883,600 |   2,931,300 |      47,700 |         1.7
Wyoming ......................|     290,800 |     282,000 |      -8,800 |        -3.0
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   p = preliminary.



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Last Modified Date: June 17, 2016