This week the government's data showed that unemployment actually fell in 21 states in April. Additionally 11 states saw their unemployment numbers hold steady rather than rise. Given that the unemployment rate rose in 46 states in March, the April state numbers are further evidence that the labor market is stabilizing.
Here are highlights from 10 of those 21 states where employment is improving...
- Missouri saw the biggest drop in unemployment, with it's rate falling 0.6 percent to 8.1 percent in April.
- Wisconsin’s unemployment rate fell to 8.8 percent, compared to 9.4 percent in March.
- Arizona’s jobless rate fell to 7.7 percent in April, down slightly from its 7.8 percent reading in March.
- Colorado's unemployment rate also dropped a tenth of a percentage point in April from the previous month. It was the first month-to-month decrease in the state since October 2007. The April statewide rate registered 7.4 percent.
- The unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent in April from 8.2 percent in March in Minnesota. It was the first rate decline in a year for that state.
- California's jobless rate improved slightly from 11.2 percent in March to 11.0 percent in April. In the San Francisco area including San Mateo and Marin counties, the unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent in April from 8.6 percent in March. In addition to the rate drop, San Francisco, which has one of the state's strongest labor markets, also added jobs in April. Further, unemployment fell from 11.3% to 11.0% in Los Angeles County.
- Indiana's unemployment rate dropped slightly to 9.9 percent in April from 10.0 the month before. Notably unemployment rates fell significantly in most of northeast Indiana in April, compared with March. Specifically Allen County’s jobless rate fell to 9.5 percent in April from 10.8 percent in March.
- Florida's jobless rate in April was 9.6 percent, two-tenths of a percentage point below March's revised rate of 9.8 percent.
- Wisconsin’s unemployment rate fell in April to 8.8 percent, compared to 9.4 percent in March.
- New York State's unemployment rate fell from 7.8 percent in March to 7.7 percent in April. In the Big Apple unemployment also declined, dropping from 8.1 percent in March 2009 to 8.0 in April 2009. Outside of New York City, the unemployment rate was 7.4 percent in April 2009, down from March's 7.6 percent.
As employment continues to improve in coming months, you'll be the first to remember that it was the peak in initial claims for unemployment that marked the 2008-2009 recession's end.
When all you read is gloom, turn here for a much different perspective.