Key Points:

  • Unemployment rates fell in 20 states and the District of Columbia, and remained stable in 30 states in March.
  • The U.S. unemployment rate fell by 0.2% over the month to 6.0%, but is still 1.6% higher than March 2020.
  • 19 states and the District of Columbia have unemployment rates above the U.S. average.
  • Nebraska, South Dakota, Utah, and Vermont have the lowest rates at 2.9%.
  • Hawaii has the highest unemployment rate at 9.0%, followed by New York at 8.5%, and Connecticut, New Mexico, and California at 8.3%.
  • The largest increase in unemployment occurred in North Carolina with a 0.5% increase over the month.
  • The states facing the highest daily average COVID cases per capita over the last 7 days are also seeing the highest unemployment rates, led by New York at 8.5%, Connecticut at 8.3%, New Jersey at 7.7%, Pennsylvania at 7.3%, Rhode Island at 7.1%, Delaware at 6.5%, Colorado at 6.4%, and Michigan at 5.1%.
  • The states that lifted COVID restrictions have much lower unemployment rates, led by Iowa at 3.7%, Montana at 3.8%, Oklahoma and Missouri at 4.2%, Florida at 4.7%, and Texas at 6.9%.
  • Only 2 of the top 10 states by daily average COVID cases per capita over the last 7 days have unemployment rates below the national average.
  • Texas is the only state that lifted COVID restrictions and has an unemployment rate above the national average.