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Texas Reports Largest Job Gain

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A person fills out a job application. | Image by Brian A Jackson via Shutterstock

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Texas had the largest over-the-month job gain for the second consecutive month, while unemployment in all states remained stable or dropped in May, according to information reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

In summary, for May, BLS reported that job gain in Texas grew another 74,200 or 0.6%, in addition to the 62,800 the state saw the previous month. Over the year, BLS reported that employment increased by 762,400 in Texas by the end of May.

BLS reported that national employment increased for May in seven states, including California with 42,900 and New York at 26,800. West Virginia saw the most significant percentage increase of 1.3% from April. Alabama and South Carolina were also each up 0.6% for May, BLS reported.

In the last year, California saw the largest employment gain of 869,300. Florida’s job gain since last May increased by 468,100.

While employment numbers remained unchanged from April in 40 states, Michigan, Alaska, and Wyoming experienced drops in May at 0.3%, 1.4%, and 1%, respectively. Over the year, employment increased in 48 states and remained unchanged in Kansas and Wyoming.

By the end of May, BLS reported that the national unemployment rate held steady at 3.6% from the previous month but is 2.2% lower than it was a year ago. While Texas had the highest job gain rate in May, the unemployment rate was 4.2%, which was higher than the national average. That is down 0.1% from April in the state.

The highest unemployment rate recorded for May by BLS was in the nation’s capital. The jobless rate for the month in the District of Columbia was 5.7%, followed by New Mexico at 5.1%. Other states with unemployment rates higher than May’s national average include Alaska, California, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada, New York, and Pennsylvania.

In May, 16 states saw unemployment decrease while jobless rates in 34 states remained unchanged from April, the agency reported.

Nebraska had the lowest unemployment rate in May at 1.9%, followed by Minnesota at 2%, which was the lowest jobless rate in that state recorded by BLS since 1976. Seven other states also experienced series lows in May, including Alabama, Alaska, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, and West Virginia. According to BLS, 23 states had unemployment rates that closely matched the national average.

As California saw the greatest job gain over the last year, the state also experienced the largest unemployment drop at 3.6% from May 2021, according to BLS. With the second-largest job gain over the year, Texas saw a 1.7% drop in unemployment from the state’s 5.9% unemployment rate in May 2021. Nebraska had the smallest decrease, 0.6%, in the jobless rate.

BLS will release June’s “State Employment and Unemployment” job summary news release on July 22.

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