While initial jobless claims have been in a downtrend on a national basis since March, different states have seen different rates of declines. In addition to the weekly national report on initial jobless claims, the Department of Labor also reports claims data on a state by state basis. Although these numbers are not seasonally adjusted, they can help to gain insight as to which areas of the country are recovering (or stabilizing) the quickest. In the map and tables below we have highlighted the ten US states that have seen the largest and smallest percentage declines in initial jobless claims since their recession peaks.
Looking at the chart shows some interesting trends. In terms of states with the largest decreases in jobless claims, all but two of them (North Dakota and Kansas) are in the eastern half of the United States, including Michingan, which has seen the highest decline of any state in the union (84%). Granted, the state had one of the highest unemployment rates, so there is a lot of room for improvement. The southeast has also seen a notable improvement. Four of the ten states with the largest decrease in initial claims are the cluster of Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
The states with the smallest decreasees in initial claims for the most part also share some common traits. First of all, just as most of the states with the largest decreases are in the eastern half of the country, all but three of the ten states with the smallest decreases (Arkansas, Florida, and Maryland) are in the western half of the United States. Another theme shared by most of these states is that they are all heavily reliant on tourism. So it would appear that Americans aren't quite confident on their outlooks to spend money on vacations.
Subscribe to Bespoke Premium to receive more in-depth research from Bespoke.