August 19, 2016

NM’s unemployment rate third-highest in the nation

Unemployment office sign Flickr/cc

New Mexico’s unemployment rate now in July hit 6.4 percent, the third-highest in the country.

Unemployment office sign Photo Credit: Burt Lum cc

Unemployment office sign Photo Credit: Burt Lum cc

Those numbers come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, released Friday.

The unemployment rate in New Mexico stood at 6.2 percent from March until June. The national unemployment rate stood at 4.9 percent.

This is a drop from a year ago, when New Mexico’s July unemployment rate was 6.6 percent.

New Mexico’s 0.2 percentage point increase in unemployment between June and July was tied for the second-highest in the country. Kansas saw a 0.3 percentage point increase from 3.8 percent to 4.1 percent.

New Mexico actually saw nearly 1,800 more jobs in July than June, though the numbers are still nearly 1,000 less than the same time in 2016.

Unemployment rate counts those who are actively looking for jobs and cannot find a job.

The unemployment rate in 40 states, according to BLS, remained more or less steady; seven saw increases in the rate and three saw drops.

New Mexico’s unemployment rate is higher than other neighboring states. Arizona had the next-highest unemployment rate in July, 6.0 percent. Texas saw an unemployment rate of 4.6 percent Utah at 3.9 percent and Colorado at 3.8 percent.

The highest unemployment rate in the country in July belonged to Alaska, at 6.7 percent. On the other end of the spectrum, South Dakota had an unemployment rate of 2.8 percent.