PROTECTING SMALL BUSINESS, PROMOTING ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Pandemic Employment Performance by State

By at 20 April, 2021, 8:02 am

by RAYMOND KEATING-

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has released the latest estimate of jobs by state. And while all states have suffered during this pandemic economy, the damage has varied considerably by state.

The BLS report on March 2021 nonfarm payroll employment noted that compared to February 2021, “Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 29 states and was essentially unchanged in 21 states and the District of Columbia in March 2021. Over the year, nonfarm payroll employment decreased in 46 states and the District and was essentially unchanged in 4 states.”

As for which states have fared least worst to most worst on the employment front during the pandemic economy, the following table shows the percent change in nonfarm payroll employment from pre-pandemic February 2020 to March 2021.

Percent Change in Nonfarm Payroll Employment, February 2020 to March 2021 

Rank

State

Percent Change, Feb 20 to March 21

1 Idaho  1.55
2 Utah -0.25
3 Montana -1.51
4 Arkansas -1.55
5 South Dakota -2.03
6 Nebraska -2.81
7 Alabama -3.00
8 North Carolina -3.09
9 Tennessee -3.27
10 Arizona -3.28
11 Missouri -3.46
12 Mississippi -3.48
13 Iowa -3.50
14 Georgia -3.57
15 Texas -3.96
16 West Virginia -4.22
17 Kansas -4.27
18 Oklahoma -4.30
19 Maine -4.35
20 Kentucky -4.42
21 South Carolina -4.48
22 Indiana -4.65
23t Wyoming -4.75
23t New Hampshire -4.75
25 Wisconsin -4.81
26 Colorado -5.00
27 Ohio -5.08
28 Virginia -5.18
29 Washington -5.41
30t Florida -5.71
30t North Dakota -5.71
32 Delaware -5.76
33 Minnesota -5.79
34 Oregon -5.89
35 Maryland -6.04
36 Illinois -6.40
37 Connecticut -7.01
38 Pennsylvania -7.06
39 Michigan -7.37
40 Alaska -7.58
41 Massachusetts -7.70
42 Louisiana -7.88
43 Vermont -8.06
44 New Jersey -8.12
45 Rhode Island -8.16
46 California -8.36
47 New Mexico -8.38
48 Nevada -9.12
49 New York -10.15
50 Hawaii -16.37

 

The range is striking, with Idaho showing a gain in employment of +1.55 percent to -16.37 percent in Hawaii. Idaho was the only state not experiencing a loss.

So, while the climb back to wipe out pandemic job losses remains a challenge across the nation, in some states, it stands as a far steeper climb than in others. State and local lawmakers will need to consider nearly every policy decision as to how it will affect the costs and incentives for the sources of economic recovery and growth, that is, for entrepreneurship, investment, innovation and business growth.

Raymond J. Keating is chief economist for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council.

 

 

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