The 10 States Leading the Economic Recovery All Have One Thing in Common (And So Do the Worst Ones!) | Brad Polumbo

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The economy continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing government restrictions. But newly released Labor Department data show that the recovery isn’t equal across all 50 states and Washington, DC. Some parts of the US have almost or entirely returned to pre-pandemic unemployment rates—while others remain strangled in stagnation.

Here are the 10 states with the lowest unemployment rates as of July 2021.

  1. Nebraska: 2.3 percent
  2. Utah: 2.6 percent
  3. New Hampshire: 2.9 percent
  4. South Dakota: 2.9 percent
  5. Idaho: 3.0 percent
  6. Vermont: 3.0 percent
  7. Alabama: 3.2 percent
  8. Oklahoma: 3.5 percent
  9. Montana: 3.6 percent
  10. Georgia: 3.7 percent
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Many different factors influence unemployment rates, but there’s one glaring thing these 10 states all have in common: Republican governors. Generalizing, GOP-led states had lighter government lockdowns on their economies and reopened sooner. So, too, except for Vermont, these states have all prematurely terminated the ongoing supplemental unemployment benefits that can pay unemployed households up to $25/hour. (More than what many workers made in their previous jobs.)

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