The chart above shows the unemployment rate in each US state as of May 2021, the change from the previous month, and the rate one year prior. Five states have an unemployment rate below three percent.
- The difference between the state with the lowest unemployment rate, New Hampshire, and the state with the highest, Hawaii, is 5.60 percentage points (down from 5.70 last month and down from 19.10 last year). Nebraska, New Hampshire, South Dakota, and Utah had the lowest rate last month while Nebraska had the lowest rate last year. Hawaii had the highest rate last month while Nevada had the highest rate last year.
- Hawaii has 3.24 times the unemployment rate that New Hampshire does. The ratio of highest rate to lowest rate was up from 3.04 last month and down from 4.54 last year.
- The median unemployment rate in the 50 US states is 5.00 (same as 5.00 last month and down from 11.35 last year) and the mean 5.20 (down from 5.33 the previous month and down from 11.72 last year).
- Of the 50 states, 10 saw no change in the unemployment rate from the previous month, 34 saw an improvement, and 6 saw the rate increase.
- Of the 50 states, 0 saw no change in the unemployment rate from last year, 50 saw an improvement over the prior year's rate, and 0 saw the unemployment rate increase over the year.
- Data is from May 2021.
- Data may conflict with previous month's report as statistical agencies make updates to the rates over the course of the month.
- All figures are rounded to the nearest hundredth.
In absolute terms, Delaware and Rhode Island had the best performance over the previous month dropping 0.5 percentage points. Ohio had the worst performance with an increase of 0.3 percentage points in the unemployment rate. Year over year, Nevada had the best performance with a 16.7 percentage point drop while New Mexico had the worst performance with a 2.0 percentage point drop in the unemployment rate.
In relative terms, New Hampshire had the best performance over the previous month with a 10.71% drop in the rate while Ohio had the worst performance with an 6.38% rise in the rate. Year over year, New Hampshire had the best performance with a 81.34% drop in the rate while New Mexico had the worst performance with a 20.00% drop in the rate.
Of the 50 states, 11 have an unemployment rate below four percent (down from 12 last month, up from 0 last year) which traditionally has placed inflationary pressure on wages. Of the 50, 38 have a rate between four and eight percent (up from 34 last month, up from 4 last year), and 1 has a rate above eight percent (down from 4 last month, down from 46 last year).
North Dakota (from 16th lowest unemployment rate to 12th lowest) and South Carolina (from 25th to 21st) rose 4 spots between last month and this. On the other hand, Ohio (from 19th to 25th) fell 6 spots. Year-over-year, New Hampshire (from 38th to 1st) rose 37 spots. Conversely, New Mexico (from 20th to 49th) fell 29 spots.
|State||Last Year||Previous Rate||Latest Rate|
Bureau of Labor Statistics. 2021. "State Employment and Unemployment (Monthly) News Release." Accessed July 12, 2021. https://www.bls.gov/news.release/laus.htm.