The November state employment statistics show a drop in unemployment rates exceeding actual job growth. No state's unemployment rate increased for November. Only five states had no change in unemployment, 45 plus the District of Columbia showed declines. The November national unemployment rate was 7.7%. Below is the BLS map of state's unemployment rates for the month.
There are now only two states with unemployment rates above 10%, Nevada at 10.8% and Rhode Island, at 10.4%. California dropped below 10% for the first time since the start of the great recession jobs slaughter with a 9.8% unemployment rate. There are now just three states have unemployment rates above 9%, California just mentioned, New Jersey at 9.6% and North Carolina at 9.1%. Michigan's unemployment rate dropped to 8.9% unemployment rate, Connecticut is 8.8% and Illinois is 8.7%.
The states with the lowest unemployment rates are North Dakota at 3.1%, Nebraska at 3.7% and South Dakota with a 4.4% unemployment rate.
Payrolls on the other hand are not growing in ratio to the dropping unemployment rates. While jobs increased in 30 states, payrolls actually shrank in 20 plus the District of Columbia. From the report are the most significant percentage changes per state from last month in jobs.
Louisiana experienced the largest over-the-month percentage increase in employment (+0.9 percent), followed by Hawaii, Nevada, and North Carolina (+0.8 percent each). The District of Columbia experienced the largest over-the-month percentage decline in employment (-0.7 percent), followed by Nebraska and New York (-0.4 percent each).
Superstorm Sandy did show up a tad yet it's clear the BLS is not assuming the effect is all due to the storm and could be underlying economic trends.
The largest over-the-month decrease in employment occurred in New York (-33,500), followed by Indiana (-9,100) and New Jersey (-8,100).
Below is the BLS report table of the monthly significant changes in employment and the thing to notice is how small the changes are in comparison to the total payrolls of each state. California has 12% of the U.S. population and Texas is the next largest state. It's also hard to imagine all of those lost jobs in New York are due to the storm as New Jersey didn't suffer nearly as much and they were hit much harder by Superstorm Sandy.
The over the year change isn't so great either as only 29 states showed any statistically significant change and one of those states, West Virginia’s employment decreased by -13,800.
The largest over-the-year jobs increase occurred in Texas (+278,800), followed by California (+268,600) and Ohio(+100,400).
Below is the BLS map for over the year percentage change of nonfarm payrolls per state. Two states actually improved their annual payrolls for the year. North Dakota, which didn't even know a recession happened, is now joined by Utah. Ten states managed to increase jobs by 2.1% to 3.0%. Twelve states increased payrolls by 1.1% to 2.0%. We can see 21 states payrolls grew between 0.1% to 1.0% over an entire year. Five states plus the District of Columbia actually lost jobs or had no change from a year ago.
Another statistic available via tables are the civilian, non-institutionalized population to those actually employed ratios per state, tables here. Below is the BLS map for the annual 2011 population to employment ratios and Novembers's rates are here. Overall, those rates haven't changed much from the 2011 averages. One can see except really low ratios and the states in beige are the only ones with more normal percentages. What this implies is beyond the potential large populations of those in retirement, there are clearly large populations not being counted as part of the labor force who are capable of being so. In other words, in spite of the drop in official unemployment rates, in most states the job crisis is ongoing five years.