Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in June. Twenty-seven states recorded unemployment rate increases, 11 states and the District of Columbia posted rate decreases, and 12 states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Forty-seven states and the District of Columbia registered unemployment rate decreases from a year earlier, while three states experienced increases. The national jobless rate, at 8.2 percent, was unchanged from May but 0.9 percentage point lower than in June 2011. In June 2012, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 29 states and the District of Columbia and decreased in 21 states. The largest over-the-month increase in employment occurred in California (+38,300), followed by Ohio (+18,400) and North Carolina (+16,900). The largest over-the-month decrease in employment occurred in Wisconsin (-13,200), followed by Tennessee (-12,100) and Maryland (-11,000).
Alaska experienced the largest over-the-month percentage increase in employment (+1.0 percent), followed by South Dakota (+0.7 percent) and North Dakota (+0.6 percent). New Mexico, Vermont, and Wisconsin experienced the largest over-the-month percentage declines in employment (-0.5 percent each). Over the year, nonfarm employment increased in 44 states and the District of Columbia and decreased in 6 states. The largest over-the-year percentage increase occurred in North Dakota (+6.5 percent), followed by Louisiana (+2.8 percent). The largest over-the-year percentage decrease in employment occurred in Rhode Island (-0.8 percent), followed by Wisconsin (-0.7 percent).
Regional Unemployment (Seasonally Adjusted)
The West continued to record the highest regional unemployment rate in June, 9.4 percent, while the Midwest again reported the lowest rate, 7.3 percent. Over the month, only the Northeast experienced a statistically significant unemployment rate change (+0.2 percentage point). Significant over-the-year rate changes occurred in three regions: the Midwest and South (-1.2 percentage points each) and West (-1.1points).
Among the nine geographic divisions, the Pacific continued to report the highest jobless rate, 10.0 percent in June. The West North Central again registered the lowest rate, 5.7 percent. Only the Middle Atlantic recorded a statistically significant over-the-month unemployment rate change (+0.2 percentage point). Eight divisions had measurable rate changes from a year earlier, all of which were decreases. The largest of these declines occurred in the East South Central (-1.5 percentage points) and East North Central (-1.4 points)…