Unemployment rates were lower in July in 30 states, higher in 9 states, and stable in 11 states and the District of Columbia, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. All 50 states and the District had jobless rate increases from a year earlier. The national unemployment rate fell by 0.9 percentage point over the month to 10.2 percent but was 6.5 points higher than in July 2019.
Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 40 states and the District of Columbia, decreased in 1 state, and was essentially unchanged in 9 states in July 2020. Over the year, nonfarm payroll employment decreased in 49 states and the District and was essentially unchanged in 1 state.
This news release presents statistics from two monthly programs. The civilian labor force and unemployment data are modeled based largely on a survey of households. These data pertain to individuals by where they reside. The employment data are from an establishment survey that measures nonfarm employment, hours, and earnings by industry. These data pertain to jobs on payrolls defined by where the establishments are located. For more information about the concepts and statistical methodologies used by these two programs, see the Technical Note. See tables.
Massachusetts had the highest unemployment rate in July, 16.1 percent, followed by New York, 15.9 percent. The rates in Connecticut (10.2 percent), New Mexico (12.7 percent), and New York (15.9 percent) set new series highs. (All state series begin in 1976.) Utah had the lowest unemployment rate, 4.5 percent, followed by Nebraska, 4.8 percent, and Idaho, 5.0 percent. In total, 28 states and the District of Columbia had jobless rates lower than the U.S. figure of 10.2 percent, 11 states had higher rates, and 11 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.
In July, the largest unemployment rate decrease occurred in Michigan (-6.2 percentage points). Rates declined over the month by at least 2.0 percentage points in an additional six states. The largest over-the-month jobless rate increases occurred in New Mexico (+4.3 percentage points) and Maine (+3.2 points).
The largest unemployment rate increases from July 2019 occurred in Massachusetts (+13.2 percentage points) and New York (+12.0 points), with another three states experiencing increases of 10.0 points or more. The smallest over-the-year rate increases occurred in Kentucky (+1.4 percentage points) and Nebraska (+1.7 points).
Nonfarm Payroll Employment
Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 40 states and the District of Columbia in July 2020. The largest job gains occurred in New York (+176,600), California (+140,400), and New Jersey (+129,900). The largest percentage increases occurred in New Jersey (+3.6 percent), Rhode Island (+3.1 percent), and Michigan and Missouri (+2.7 percent each). Employment decreased in New Mexico (-6,000, or -0.8 percent).
Over the year, nonfarm payroll employment decreased in 49 states and the District of Columbia and was essentially unchanged in Idaho. The largest job declines occurred in California (-1,643,600), New York (-1,345,800), and Texas (-694,400). The smallest declines occurred in Wyoming (-20,200), South Dakota (-20,300), and Montana (-23,600). The largest percentage declines occurred in Hawaii (-16.1 percent), New York (-13.7 percent), and Massachusetts (-12.2 percent). The smallest percentage declines occurred in Utah (-2.0 percent), Arizona (-3.6 percent), and Mississippi (-3.7 percent).