The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last Friday that unemployment rates declined in 18 states in November, on a year-over-year basis. Unemployment stayed the same in the other 32 states and in Washington D.C. New Mexico and Georgia had the largest declines in unemployment, both by at least a whole percentage point.
Unemployment in the U.S. has been decreasing in recent years, however not all states are the same. While the national unemployment is relatively low at 3.7 percent, Alaska has it much higher at 6.3 percent and Hawaii and Iowa tied for the lowest at 2.4 percent.
Job markets differ significantly from state to state. Those with low unemployment will have employers competing for labor and thus will see an increase in wages. States with high unemployment will have workers competing for jobs and lower wages.