newsThe U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the annual average unemployment rates fell in 48 states and increased the final 2 and DC. The unemployment rate for the year was 8.9 percent, a decline of 0.7 percent over the year. All four of the major national regions recorded significant unemployment rate decreases. The region reporting the highest decrease in its jobless rate was the Midwest, falling 1.1 percent. The region was followed by the West (down 0.6 percent) and the Northeast and South (both down 0.5 percent). Additionally, the only region experiencing a jobless rate significantly greater than the national average was the West (10.4 percent). The Northeast and Midwest recorded rates of 8.2 percent and 8.4 percent, respectively.

Thirty states experienced significant jobless rate declines, over the year. Michigan experienced the greatest decrease (down 2.4 percent), followed by Ohio (down 1.4 percent), Utah (down 1.3 percent), Oregon (down 1.2 percent), and Indiana (down 1.1 percent). Eight states plus DC registered unemployment rates over 10 percent. The highest rates in the nation were posted in Nevada (13.5 percent) and California (11.7 percent). The lowest unemployment rates were recorded in North Dakota (3.5 percent) and Nebraska (4.4 percent).

Divisionally, 8 of 9 regions saw significant decreases in unemployment rates over the year. The largest declines were found in the East North Central region (down 1.3 percent) and New England (down 0.8 percent). The highest rate was recorded in the Pacific (11 percent), followed by the East South Central region (9.4 percent) and the South Atlantic region (9.3 percent).

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