While most metropolitan areas show improvement, the West continues to have the highest unemployment in the US.

metro-regional-data-on-employment-from-the-BLS-report

“The Employment Situation — July 2014” national BLS report showed a continuation of monthly job gains, adding 209,000 new jobs to the economy. This marks the sixth straight month we’ve seen increases of 200,000+ jobs.

Both regional and state unemployment rates saw little change in the United States metropolitan areas, according to the BLS’ latest “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment” report. In June, the national unemployment rate declined slightly to 6.1 percent – 1.4 percentage points lower than a year earlier. In fact, forty-nine states and the District of Columbia have seen unemployment rate decreases over the past year.

Looking deeper into the June metro area numbers, Bismarck, North Dakota once again led the nation with the lowest unemployment rate — now at 2.6 percent, an increase of 0.4 percentage points from May. Of the 372 metropolitan areas, 10 had jobless rates of at least 10 percent, whereas 74 areas had rates of less than 5.0 percent.

In other positive news, unemployment decreased in 359 of 372 metropolitan areas, increased in 10 areas and was unchanged in 3 areas. Additionally, each of the 34 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year employment gains since June 2013. The largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment among these divisions occurred in Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Fla. (+3.7 percent), followed by Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos, Texas and Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (+3.6 percent each).

Here are some key regional highlights from the BLS “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment — June 2014” report:
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Metropolitan employment showing improvement nationwide

Jobs report: in your regionSources: Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment Report – May 2014Regional and State Employment and Unemployment – May 2014

The national BLS “The Employment Situation — June 2014” report showed another surge in employment, adding 288,000 new jobs to the economy, the fifth straight month to show 200,000+ job gains.  Economists are hopeful that this upswing will continue as we enter the third quarter.

Both regional and state unemployment rates saw little change in the United States metropolitan areas, according to the BLS’ latest Metropolitan Employment and Unemployment report. In May, the national unemployment rate held at 6.3 percent after April’s drop of 0.4 percent, proving to be 1.2 percentage points lower than it had been a year earlier. In fact, forty-nine states and the District of Columbia have seen unemployment rate decreases over the past year.
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Metropolitan employment improving across the country

Jobs report: in your region

Sources: Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment Report – April 2014Regional and State Employment and Unemployment – April 2014

The national BLS “The Employment Situation — May 2014” report showed a surge in employment, adding 217,000 new jobs to the economy, the fourth straight month to show 200,000+ job gains. Economists are hopeful that this continual upswing will prove to be permanent recovery from the Great Recession.

Both regional and state unemployment rates continued to fall for the majority of the Unites States metropolitan areas, according to the BLS’ latest “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment” report.

In April, the national unemployment rate fell 0.5 percentage points to 6.3, a whopping 1.2 percentage points lower than the previous year. 357 of the 372 areas showed a lower unemployment rate from the April 2013 number. Only 12 metro areas reported higher unemployment (18 less than the previous year), while 3 showed unchanged data (compared to 14 last year).

Looking deeper into the April metro area numbers, Bismark, North Dakota — at 2.6 percent —led the nation with the lowest unemployment rate. In total, 19 states had jobless rates significantly lower than the US figure of 6.3, while 7 states and DC had higher rates, and 24 states had rates that were not measurably different than the national average.

In other positive news, employment increased in 302 of 372 metropolitan areas, decreased in 63 areas and was unchanged in 7 areas. Additionally, 30 of the 32 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year employment gains and 2 had losses since April 2013. The largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment among these divisions occurred in Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (+4.2 percent), followed by Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, Florida and Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, Florida (+3.3 percent each).

Here are some key regional highlights from the BLS “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment — April 2014 report:
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Latest BLS regional and state unemployment figures released

Jobs report: in your regionSource: BLS

In February, the U.S. unexpectedly added 175,000 jobs to the economy — which was the first time since November that more than 129,000 jobs were added. The majority of U.S. states followed suit to the national surge. In total, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 33 states and decreased in 17 states, plus the District of Columbia.

Looking closer at February unemployment rates, 29 states saw decreases from January, 10 had increases, while 11 states plus the District of Columbia stayed the same. Impressively, 49 states plus the District of Columbia realized unemployment rate decreases from the previous year—further proof that the U.S. economy is strengthening at a steady, yet prolonged pace.

Regionally, the West had the highest unemployment rate in February—reporting at 7.2 percent—0.5 percent higher than the national rate. The South showed the lowest unemployment rate of 6.1 percent. Over the course of the year all four regions had remarkable unemployment rate declines—with the South and Northeast dropping 1.2 percent each, the West decreasing 1.1 percent, and the Midwest shedding 0.8 percentage points.

Here are some key divisional highlights from the “Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary — February 2014”:
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BLS regional and state annual averages report for 2013 released

Jobs report: in your region

Source: BLS 

In 2013, as evidenced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics “Regional and State Unemployment — 2013 Annual Averages” report, the unemployment rate decreased in 43 U.S. states, plus the District of Columbia. It rose in only 2 states, and remained unchanged in 5 states. On average, the national rate fell 0.7 percent from the previous year, with December 2013 seeing the largest year-to-year rate drop of 1.2 percent. By the end of 2013, the national unemployment rate fell to 6.7 percent — the lowest since October 2008 — and in January 2014, the rate inched down to 6.6 percent.

All four U.S. regions saw remarkable decreases in their unemployment rates, with the West having the largest drop of 1.2 percentage points. While the West had the largest decrease, it still was well above the national rate, at 8.0 percent. Conversely, the South region had the only unemployment rate significantly below the national average, at 7.0 percent.

Zooming into the 9 geographic divisions, 6 of them had notable year-to-year unemployment rate decreases. The largest decrease occurred in the Pacific — which dropped 1.4 percent, and the South Atlantic — which fell 1.0 percent. Just like its parent region the Pacific had the largest percentage drop, but unfortunately retained the highest national unemployment rate of 8.4 percent — an unwanted title it has owned for the sixth year in a row.
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Regional employment upticks as recovery continues

There is no doubt about it: a trend has been established. As was the case throughout 2012, unemployment once again diminished within a majority of the United States’ metropolitan areas in December.

According to the BLS’ latest “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment” report, published on January 30th, 290 of the nation’s 372 metro areas recorded a lower jobless rate in December 2012 than in December 2011, while 68 areas’ unemployment rates rose during that time span.
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