U.S. Unemployment Statistics

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The unemployment rate, reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), is the percent of people in the labor force who are unemployed. The labor force is essentially the pool of Americans available to work; it excludes people not seeking employment, such as retired seniors and children. Understanding the severity and trends of unemployment is vital to ensuring the overall well-being of communities.

Because the unemployment rate can vary in predictable ways from month to month—as hiring increases during winter holidays, for example—people often use a seasonally-adjusted rate, also published by the BLS, to better compare the data over time. 

What is the unemployment rate throughout the United States?

Note: Hover over to each state to see its unemployment rate. Use the time-slider beneath the map to see data from different months.

Characteristics of the unemployed population, shown in the charts below, are reported by the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS). Unlike the Census, which is an exact count of people and households every ten years, ACS statistics are estimated based on a representative survey sample. The data here is shown over a five year period.

How does the unemployment rate vary by sex, age, and race in the United States?

How does the unemployment rate vary by education in the United States?

About the Data

Monthly US-level unemployment data is from the Current Population Survey, conducted jointly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Census Bureau. The state-level data is from the BLS' Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program. 

Characteristics of the unemployed population data is from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS), 5-year estimates, Table S2301.

This report uses the Census Bureau Data API but is not endorsed or certified by the Census Bureau.