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Rhode Island unemployment high in 2013

Posted on March 1, 2014

Out of all the states, Rhode Island unemployment was the second highest in 2013, according to labor market statistics.

Nevada again had the highest unemployment rate (9.8 percent) in 2013, followed by Rhode Island (9.5 percent) and Illinois (9.2 percent). North Dakota had the lowest jobless rate among the states for the fifth year in a row (2.9 percent), followed by South Dakota (3.8 percent) and Nebraska (3.9 percent). Overall, 25 states had unemployment rates that were significantly lower than the U.S. rate of 7.4 percent, while 11 states and the District of Columbia had rates significantly above it.

No region had a statistically significant change in its employment-population ratio–the proportion of the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years of age and over who are employed. The Midwest continued to have the highest ratio, 60.5 percent, while the South, at 57.8 percent, had the lowest, followed by the West, at 57.9 percent. The ratios in these three regions were significantly different from the national figure of 58.6 percent.

The East South Central was the only division with a statistically significant change in its employment-population ratio in 2013 (-0.8 percentage point). The East South Central again had the lowest proportion of employed persons, 54.4 percent. The next lowest ratios were in the Pacific (57.4 percent), South Atlantic (57.7 percent), and Middle Atlantic (58.0 percent). Ratios in all four of these divisions were significantly below the national average. The division with the highest employment-population ratio was the West North Central, at 64.8 percent, followed by New England, at 60.9 percent. These two divisions, along with the West South Central, at 59.6 percent, had employment-population ratios measurably above that of the U.S.

West Virginia again had the lowest employment-population ratio among the states, 50.1 percent in 2013. West Virginia has had the lowest employment-population ratio each year since the series began in 1976. Four states in the West North Central division again had the highest ratios: North Dakota (69.4 percent), Nebraska (69.2 percent), South Dakota (67.2 percent), and Minnesota (66.8 percent). Overall, 22 states and the District of Columbia had employment-population ratios that were significantly above the U.S. ratio of 58.6 percent, and 18 states had ratios that were appreciably below it. Three states had the lowest employment-population ratios in their series in 2013: Delaware, 56.7 percent; Nevada, 57.2 percent; and Oregon, 56.7 percent.

Mystic River Press
Sun Chronicle
Johnston Sunrise
Cranston Herald
Sakonnet Times
Portsmouth Times
The Express