Despite the winter slowdown, March 2014 marked a key milestone in the Nation’s employment situation. From a regional and state perspective, the unemployment rates changed very little during the month. The March 2014 BLS Regional and State Unemployment report found that 21 states had unemployment rate decreases, 17 states and the District of Columbia had increases, and 12 states had no change. As compared to a year ago, 46 states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate decreases and only four states reported increases.
Regional and State Specific Stats for March
For the month, the South again maintained the lowest unemployment rate at 6.0 percent. The West continued to have the highest regional unemployment rate at 7.2 percent despite California leading the country in over-the-year job increases with more than 315,000 jobs created. California was followed by Texas with 310,000 new jobs, and Florida with 225,100 new jobs.
Among the states, Rhode Island had the highest unemployment rate with 8.7 percent, and North Dakota again had the lowest jobless rate at 2.6 percent. Furthermore in March, 7 states showed statistically significant over-the-month employment increases, the largest being Florida reporting an additional 22,900 new jobs, North Carolina reporting 19,400 new jobs, and Georgia reporting 14,600 new jobs. Since the beginning of the year, 26 states are reporting positive statistically significant changes in employment.
California also led the country in number of individuals employed in Professional and Business services sector with over 2,395,300 employed with Texas coming in second with 1,494,400, and New York in third with 1,218,000. Wyoming had the lowest with 18,600 employed.
March’s Key Takeaways
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