April 11, 2011
In February 2011, El Centro, California, recorded the highest unemployment rate (26.9 percent) among all U.S. metropolitan areas. Among the metropolitan areas with a Census 2000 population of 1 million or more, the highest unemployment rates in February were registered in Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, California (13.9 percent), and Las Vegas-Paradise, Nevada (13.7 percent). Fifteen additional large areas posted rates of 10.0 percent or more.
Lincoln, Nebraska, registered the lowest unemployment rate (4.2 percent). Bismarck, North Dakota, had the next-lowest rate (4.6 percent), followed by Ames, Iowa; Fargo, North Dakota-Minnesota; and Iowa City, Iowa, at 4.7 percent each. All of these areas are located in the West North Central census division.
The lowest jobless rates among the large areas were recorded in Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.Va., and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 5.9 and 6.2 percent, respectively.
These data are from the Local Area Unemployment Statistics program. The data for February 2011 are preliminary and subject to revision. The data are not seasonally adjusted. To learn more, see "Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment – February 2011" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL-11-0461.