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Unemployment rates rose in 29 states and the District of Columbia in March 2020

April 23, 2020

Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia had statistically significant unemployment rate increases in March 2020. Rates were lower over the month in 3 states and stable in 18 states. The national unemployment rate rose from 3.5 percent in February to 4.4 percent in March.

Change in unemployment rates for states from February to March 2020
State Change from February to March 2020 March 2020 rate February 2020 rate Statistically significant change?

Nevada

2.7 percentage points 6.3% 3.6% Yes

Colorado

2.0 4.5 2.5 Yes

Louisiana

1.7 6.9 5.2 Yes

Kentucky

1.6 5.8 4.2 Yes

Florida

1.5 4.3 2.8 Yes

California

1.4 5.3 3.9 Yes

Ohio

1.4 5.5 4.1 Yes

Arkansas

1.3 4.8 3.5 Yes

Nebraska

1.3 4.2 2.9 Yes

Pennsylvania

1.3 6.0 4.7 Yes

Washington

1.3 5.1 3.8 Yes

Delaware

1.2 5.1 3.9 Yes

Illinois

1.2 4.6 3.4 Yes

Rhode Island

1.2 4.6 3.4 Yes

Texas

1.2 4.7 3.5 Yes

West Virginia

1.2 6.1 4.9 Yes

Georgia

1.1 4.2 3.1 Yes

New Mexico

1.1 5.9 4.8 Yes

Utah

1.1 3.6 2.5 Yes

Arizona

1.0 5.5 4.5 Yes

Missouri

1.0 4.5 3.5 Yes

District of Columbia

0.9 6.0 5.1 Yes

Iowa

0.9 3.7 2.8 Yes

Alabama

0.8 3.5 2.7 Yes

New York

0.8 4.5 3.7 Yes

North Carolina

0.8 4.4 3.6 Yes

Vermont

0.8 3.2 2.4 Yes

Virginia

0.7 3.3 2.6 Yes

Michigan

0.5 4.1 3.6 Yes

Indiana

0.1 3.2 3.1 No

Massachusetts

0.1 2.9 2.8 No

South Carolina

0.1 2.6 2.5 Yes

Tennessee

0.1 3.5 3.4 No

Kansas

0.0 3.1 3.1 No

Maine

0.0 3.2 3.2 No

Maryland

0.0 3.3 3.3 No

Minnesota

0.0 3.1 3.1 No

Montana

0.0 3.5 3.5 No

New Hampshire

0.0 2.6 2.6 No

New Jersey

0.0 3.8 3.8 No

North Dakota

0.0 2.2 2.2 No

Oregon

0.0 3.3 3.3 No

South Dakota

0.0 3.3 3.3 No

Wyoming

0.0 3.7 3.7 No

Connecticut

-0.1 3.7 3.8 No

Hawaii

-0.1 2.6 2.7 No

Idaho

-0.1 2.6 2.7 Yes

Mississippi

-0.1 5.3 5.4 No

Oklahoma

-0.1 3.1 3.2 Yes

Wisconsin

-0.1 3.4 3.5 No

Alaska

-0.2 5.6 5.8 Yes

The largest unemployment rate increases in March occurred in Nevada (+2.7 percentage points) and Colorado (+2.0 points). Rates rose over the month by at least a full percentage point in 19 other states. Alaska had the largest jobless rate decrease from February (−0.2 percentage point).

North Dakota had the lowest unemployment rate in March, 2.2 percent, while Louisiana had the highest rate, 6.9 percent. The rates in Alaska (5.6 percent) and Idaho (2.6 percent) set new lows. (All state data begin in 1976.) In total, 25 states had unemployment rates lower than the U.S. figure of 4.4 percent, 13 states and the District of Columbia had higher rates, and 12 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.

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 "State Employment and Unemployment — March 2020." Also see more charts and maps on state employment and unemployment.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Unemployment rates rose in 29 states and the District of Columbia in March 2020 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2020/unemployment-rates-rose-in-29-states-and-the-district-of-columbia-in-march-2020.htm (visited August 05, 2020).

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