FILE - Virus Outbreak Missouri Unemployment

A person walks past a business closed due to the coronavirus outbreak Thursday, May 7, 2020, in St. Louis.

(The Center Square) – The unemployment rate in Missouri stood at 4.6 percent in October, the 42nd highest percentage among the 50 states and the District of Columbia, according to new data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The October jobless rate in Missouri compares to 3.4 percent one year earlier – an increase of 1.2 percentage points, the BLS said. A total of 47 states and Washington, D.C., reported unemployment rates in October that were higher than the October 2019 rate.

For the September-to-October period, 37 states and Washington, D.C., posted lower unemployment rates, with eight states reporting higher jobless rates and five states with little to no change, according to data that is based on a BLS survey of households.

The state with the highest October jobless rate was Hawaii, where 14.3 percent of the labor force was unemployed. The states with the lowest rates were Nebraska (3 percent) and Vermont (3.2 percent), according to the analysis.

The largest one-month declines in unemployment took place in Illinois and Rhode Island. 

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Year-over-year Changes in State Jobless Rates

Rank (Highest to Lowest Jobless Rate)StateOctober 2020 Jobless RateOctober 2019 Jobless Rate12-Month Change
1Hawaii14.3%2.7%11.6
2Nevada12.0%3.7%8.3
3New York9.6%3.9%5.7
4Louisiana9.4%5.2%4.2
5California9.3%3.9%5.4
6 (tie)District of Columbia8.2%5.3%2.9
6 (tie)New Jersey8.2%3.7%4.5
8New Mexico8.1%4.8%3.3
9Arizona8.0%4.5%3.5
10Maryland7.8%3.4%4.4
11 (tie)Kentucky7.4%4.3%3.1
11 (tie)Massachusetts7.4%2.8%4.6
11 (tie)Mississippi7.4%5.6%1.8
11 (tie)Tennessee7.4%3.3%4.1
15Pennsylvania7.3%4.6%2.7
16Rhode Island7.0%3.5%3.5
17 (tie)Oregon6.9%3.4%3.5
17 (tie)Texas6.9%3.5%3.4
19Illinois6.8%3.7%3.1
20Florida6.5%2.9%3.6
21 (tie)Colorado6.4%2.5%3.9
21 (tie)West Virginia6.4%5.1%1.3
23North Carolina6.3%3.7%2.6
24Arkansas6.2%3.5%2.7
25 (tie)Connecticut6.1%3.8%2.3
25 (tie)Oklahoma6.1%3.4%2.7
27Washington6.0%4.0%2.0
28Alaska5.9%6.1%-0.2
29Alabama5.8%2.7%3.1
30Wisconsin5.7%3.5%2.2
31 (tie)Delaware5.6%4.0%1.6
31 (tie)Ohio5.6%4.1%1.5
33 (tie)Idaho5.5%2.9%2.6
33 (tie)Michigan5.5%3.9%1.6
33 (tie)Wyoming5.5%3.7%1.8
36Maine5.4%3.0%2.4
37 (tie)Kansas5.3%3.1%2.2
37 (tie)Virginia5.3%2.7%2.6
39Indiana5.0%3.2%1.8
40Montana4.9%3.5%1.4
41North Dakota4.8%2.4%2.4
42 (tie)Minnesota4.6%3.3%1.3
42 (tie)Missouri4.6%3.4%1.2
44Georgia4.5%3.2%1.3
45 (tie)New Hampshire4.2%2.6%1.6
45 (tie)South Carolina4.2%2.4%1.8
47Utah4.1%2.4%1.7
48 (tie)Iowa3.6%2.8%0.8
48 (tie)South Dakota3.6%3.4%0.2
50Vermont3.2%2.4%0.8
51Nebraska3.0%3.0%0.0

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics