Friday, January 31, 2014

Map: What States Have the Most Discouraged Workers?

This map shows the variation in discouraged workers nationally.  Discouraged workers are unemployed Americans who have given up looking for a job for awhile and have not applied for any jobs in the past 4 weeks.

In no states does the percentage of discouraged workers exceed 1%, so the numbers are relatively low. This map calculates discouraged workers as the U4 unemployment measure by the Bureau of Labor Statitistics minus U3.  U4 consists of the official unemployment measure (U3) plus discouraged workers.  So I've pulled discouraged workers out and looked at the spread of data by standard deviations.

North Dakota's oil-fueled jobs boom continues to keep that state's unemployment the lowest in the US.  Nevada's 9.7% unemployment (U4 measure) is actually higher than South Carolina's 9.3% rate, but the Palmetto State has the highest percentage of discouraged workers in the country -at least in December 2013.  Neighboring Georgia, Alabama, and Florida also have higher percentages of discouraged workers compared to the mean for the United States.

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