Unemployment by state: a story of many recoveries

Georgia’s unemployment rate fell to 9.0% in March, but that’s still really high. It’s going to be several years before the state recovers all the jobs lost during the recession.

That number comes from a survey of households, but a separate survey of payroll establishments showed much of the state still stagnating when it comes to jobs. I have more to say about that in my City Talk column this coming Sunday in the Savannah Morning News.

Still, it’s generally better to see the unemployment rate declining than increasing:

This morning, we got the monthly data for March for all states and regions, which showed lower unemployment rates in 30 states, while 12 had no change, and 8 increased.

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in March.
Thirty states recorded unemployment rate decreases, 8 states posted
rate increases, and 12 states and the District of Columbia had no
change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Forty-nine
states and the District of Columbia registered unemployment rate
decreases from a year earlier, while New York experienced an increase.

The national jobless rate was little changed from February at 8.2 percent
but was 0.7 percentage point lower than in March 2011.

And this by region:

The West continued to record the highest regional unemployment rate in
March, 9.6 percent, while the Midwest again reported the lowest rate,
7.4 percent. Over the month, only the South experienced a statistically
significant unemployment rate change (-0.2 percentage point). Over the
year, the South registered the largest of three measurable rate changes
(-1.1 percentage points), followed by the Midwest (-1.0 point) and West
(-0.9 point).
(See table 1.)

Among the nine geographic divisions, the Pacific continued to report
the highest jobless rate, 10.2 percent in March. The West North Central
again registered the lowest rate, 5.9 percent. Two divisions experienced
statistically significant unemployment rate changes over the month: the
East North Central and South Atlantic (-0.2 percentage point each). Eight
divisions had measurable unemployment rate changes from a year earlier,
all of which were decreases. The largest of these occurred in the East
South Central (-1.5 percentage points).

From Calculated Risk:

As you can see, despite Georgia’s improving numbers, we’re still 7th worst in terms of the unemployment rate.