U.S. payrolls rose in 34 states last month, while jobless rates plunged in 21, underscoring the fact that the labor market is strengthening.
Florida recorded the highest increase in payrolls, with 22,900 hires. Second was North Carolina which absorbed 19,400 workers, according to a report released on Friday by the Labor Department. In the last two months, Florida’s payroll numbers have risen by a total of 57,800, the largest advance since April-May 2010. Despite this, the unemployment rate grew to 6.3 percent in March from 6.2 percent the previous month.
“Broadly, we are seeing improvement in the labor market,” Michael Wolf, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC told Bloomberg. “As the economy gains more momentum, employment increases and spending improves.”
“Cold weather elsewhere is pushing people to the Sunshine State for some respite,” said Wolf. “Combined with the late Easter holiday, winter tourism in the state has been extended. Those business owners are seeing an uptick and are ramping up hiring accordingly.”
Ohio recorded the biggest drop in unemployment rate, which fell from 6.5 percent in February to 6.1 percent last month. New Mexico and Missouri recorded the largest advances in unemployment rate in March. North Dakota, at 2.6 percent, had the lowest jobless rate in the U.S., a figure it has maintained since the beginning of the year.
Rhode Island, at 8.7 percent, had the highest unemployment rate in the nation, though this plunged from 9 percent last month. Nevada and Illinois, at 8.5 percent and 8.4 percent respectively, came second and third in the list of states with highest unemployment figures.
The positive hiring statistics may boost consumer sentiment and trigger increased household spending, which drives nearly 70 percent of the U.S. economy. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
To contact the reporter of this story; Jonathan Millet at firstname.lastname@example.org