September 23, 2011
Nevada continued to report the highest unemployment rate among the states, 13.4 percent in August. California posted the next highest rate, 12.1 percent.
North Dakota registered the lowest jobless rate, 3.5 percent, followed by Nebraska, 4.2 percent. In total, 25 states reported jobless rates significantly lower than the U.S. figure of 9.1 percent, 8 states and the District of Columbia had measurably higher rates, and 17 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.
From August 2010 to August 2011, New Mexico registered the largest jobless rate decrease (-1.9 percentage points). Four additional states reported smaller but also statistically significant decreases over the year: Oklahoma (-1.4 percentage points), Indiana (-1.3 points), Oregon (-1.1 points), and Florida (-0.9 point). The District of Columbia posted the only significant rate increase from a year earlier (+1.3 percentage points).
These data are from the Local Area Unemployment Statistics program and are seasonally adjusted. Data for the most recent month are preliminary. To learn more, see "Regional and State Employment and Unemployment – August 2011" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL-11-1329.