How did your state's workers fare in July? Here's a rundown of unemployment rates that standout, as reported by the Labor Department today. Others run more closely in step with the national trend. (For reference, the national unemployment rate rose to 5.7 percent in July—1.0 percentage point higher than a year earlier.)
States with the highest unemployment rates:
- Michigan: 8.5 percent
- Mississippi: 7.9
- Rhode Island: 7.7
- California: 7.3
- Illinois: 7.3
- Ohio: 7.2
- South Carolina: 7.0
States with the lowest unemployment rates:
- South Dakota: 3.0 percent
- Nebraska: 3.4
- North Dakota: 3.5
- Utah: 3.5
The bad: Mississippi and South Carolina saw the largest jumps in their unemployment rates between July and June—both were up 0.9 percentage point.
The good: West Virginia and Arkansas saw their jobless rates drop by 0.8 and 0.5 percentage point, respectively, from June.
The excellent: Arkansas' unemployment rate dropped by a full percentage point from July 2007. That's the only significant decrease among the states. (Much of that was thanks to a jump in government jobs.)
The not-so excellent: Rhode Island's unemployment rate saw the steepest climb since July 2007—it's up 2.7 percentage points.