RAND State Statistics recently updated its Employment and Unemployment database, containing the number of employed, unemployed, civilian labor force, civilian noninstitutional population, labor force participation rates, and unemployment rates for the U.S., states, and counties. Here are some of the highlights.
The U.S. saw a 3.1% decrease in unemployment rates from September 2020 to September 2021, falling from 7.7% to 4.6% (See Table 1). Maine was the only state to see no change in unemployment during this period, while the other states with the highest increase in unemployment rates were Alaska (1.3%), Iowa (1.3%), Kentucky (1.3%), and South Dakota (1.4%). The states with the biggest improvements in unemployment rates were Hawaii (net increase of 8.9%), Nevada (6.6%), Rhode Island (5.9%), Illinois (4.6%), and Tennessee (4.1%) (See Figure 1).
Table 1 — Employment and Unemployment Rates, September 2020-September 2021
Figure 1 — Employment and Unemployment Rates, September 2020-September 2021
The U.S. unemployment rate grew from 3.6% in Septmeber 2018 to 4.6% in September 2021, a one percentage point increase (See Table 2). The states with the largest increase in unemployment rates were Hawaii (3.6%), New York (2.6%), California (2.5%), New Jersey (2.5%), and Massachusetts (2.2%). The states with the biggest improvements in unemployment rates were Nebraska (-1.3%), West Virginia (-1.3%), Utah (-1.2%), Montana (-1.1%), and Georgia (-1.1%) (See Figure 2).
Table 2 — Employment and Unemployment Rates, September 2018-September 2021
Figure 2 — Employment and Unemployment Rates, September 2018-September 2021
To compare U.S. unemployment rates from September 2018 to September 2021, see Figure 3. The large spike in April of 2020 highlights the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the U.S unemployment rates.
Figure 3 — Employment and Unemployment Rates, September 2018-September 2021