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Updated WalletHub study: States whose unemployment rates are bouncing back the quickest

With the U.S. gaining 428,000 jobs in April, the same as the previous month, WalletHub released updated rankings for the States Whose Unemployment Rates Are Bouncing Back Most, along with accompanying videos and audio files, to illustrate which areas of the country have had the best recovery so far.

In order to identify the states whose unemployment rates are bouncing back most, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on six key metrics that compare unemployment rate statistics from the latest month for which data is available (April 2022) to key dates in 2019, 2020 and 2021.

Below, you can see highlights from the report, along with a WalletHub Q&A.

Unemployment Recovery in California (1=Most Recovered, 25=Avg.):

  • 11.95% Change in Unemployment (April 2022 vs April 2019)
    • 888,677 unemployed people in April 2022 vs 793,811 in April 2019;
    • 15th worst recovery in the U.S.
  • 10.99% Change in Unemployment (April 2022 vs January 2020)
    • 888,677 unemployed people in April 2022 vs 800,656 in January 2020;
    • 17th worst recovery in the U.S.
  • -70.03% Change in Unemployment (April 2022 vs April 2020)
    • 888,677 unemployed people in April 2022 vs 2,965,230 in April 2020;
    • 16th worst recovery in the U.S.
  • -43.44% Change in Unemployment (April 2022 vs April 2021)
    • 888,677 unemployed people in April 2022 vs 1,571,196 in April 2021;
    • 3rd best recovery in the U.S.
  • -4.97% Change in Not Seasonally Adjusted Continued Claims (April 2022 vs April 2019)
    • 343,777 continued claims in April 2022 vs 361,762 in April 2019;
    • 7th worst recovery in the U.S.
  • 4.6% Unemployment Rate (April 2022)
    • 7th highest unemployment rate in the U.S.

To view the full report and your state’s rank, please visit: https://wallethub.com/edu/states-unemployment-rates/74907

WalletHub Q&A

How will the Fed’s rate hikes affect unemployment?

“The Fed’s rate hikes will absolutely affect unemployment. The increases may lead to somewhat higher unemployment while the Fed tries to combat high inflation,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub Analyst. “Unemployment will rise as we see an economic slowdown overall. Plus, major tech companies like Meta and Twitter have already announced hiring freezes reaching as far as the end of the year to try and control spending. We can expect to see several other companies follow suit as 2022 progresses.”

How might rising inflation impact unemployed people?

“Rising inflation has a direct impact on unemployed people. Finding a job right away is critical, as costs continue to increase and a recession looms in the horizon,” said WalletHub analyst, Jill Gonzalez. “The good news is that there are jobs out there for the taking. Jobs in logistics, dining and hospitality are very much in demand right now, so those fields might be good places to start.”

What qualities should unemployed people look for when choosing which businesses to apply to?

“The biggest thing that unemployed people should look for when choosing which businesses to apply to is compensation that’s appropriate for their field and skill level. Since there is currently an employment shortage, workers are in a great position to negotiate a worthwhile compensation package,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Other desirable features are the ability to work from home at least part of the time, measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, a positive and friendly workplace environment, and a short commute.”

Is there a big difference in the unemployment rate among various demographics?

“The unemployment rate does differ sharply among different demographics. The unemployment rate for white people is 2.9%, while it’s much higher, at 5.6%, for black people. The racial disparity is troubling, especially in the context of broader discussions of inequality that have taken place in the past year,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “The unemployment rate can fluctuate a lot by age, too; it’s only 2.2% for those ages 45 to 54, but 6.9% for people ages 20 to 24. It makes sense that people who have been in the workforce longer would have more job stability, but we should be concerned about the difficult conditions faced by young people.”

Which state has experienced the biggest increase in unemployment vs. the beginning of 2020?

“Hawaii has experienced the biggest increase in unemployment because the number of unemployed persons jumped by 98% from January 2020 to April 2022, compared to the average decrease of 0.23%,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Hawaii’s overall unemployment rate is 4.2%, compared to the average of 3.6%.”

Which state has experienced the biggest decrease in unemployment vs. the beginning of 2020?

“Minnesota has experienced the biggest decrease in unemployment because it has seen a 43% decrease in the number of unemployed persons from January 2020 to April 2022, compared to the average decrease of 0.23%,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Minnesota’s overall unemployment rate is 2.2%, compared to the average of 3.6%.”

This article was released by WalletHub.