Top 5 States in US with Lowest Unemployment Rate

Updated : June 27th, 2019


The unemployment rate reached a record low in the month of April and has persisted with the same rate in May. Presently standing at 3.6 percent, the unemployment rate is at its lowest in the last 50 years.

There are various reasons that are responsible for the reduction in the unemployment rate. Among others, the performance of some states in increasing the employment opportunities must be given due credit.

Below is the list of five states that have recorded the lowest unemployment rate for the month of May 2019: 

Top 5 states recording the lowest unemployment rates for May 2019:



April 2019  rate (%)



2.2 1
North Dakota 2.3 2
Iowa 2.4 3
New Hampshire 2.4 3
Hawaii 2.8



The state with the lowest unemployment rate for the month of May is Vermont, which stands at  2.2 percent. This is considered to be the lowest ever figure for a state ever since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics online historical series started in 1976. 

In the last year, sectors such as durable manufacturing, accommodation & food services, and health and social assistance have been hiring a large number of people. The total workforce population of Vermont is  345,000, which in comparison to other states is a relatively small population. It has, nevertheless, managed to provide employment opportunities to most of the eligible job-seekers.

Click here to know more about Vermont’s unemployment benefits. 

North Dakota

North Dakota’s incredible growth has resulted in elevating the state to reach the second position. With the unemployment at 2.3 percent, the state just fell behind Vermont by 0.1 percent. 

Unemployment peaked in North Dakota in 2009 at 4.3 percent. The state managed to reduce 2 percentage points in the span of 10 years. The number of unemployed persons has also come down from 15,724 to 6,382. Click on the link to know about the UI benefits in North Dakota


Iowa, along with New Hampshire recorded the third lowest unemployment rate for the month of May. The state has an unemployment rate of 2.4 percent, which is second only to Vermont and North Dakota.

The number of people that are unemployed has dropped to 40,000, whereas the total workforce is over 1.7 million. Those who are looking for UI benefits in Iowa, check the Iowa Unemployment Benefits page.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire shares the third place with Iowa with a 2.4 percent unemployment rate for the month of May. The state is also regarded as one of the healthiest states to live in. It also has the second lowest crime rate in the United States.

With all these distinctions, New Hamshire is surely one of the most attractive destinations for both prospective employers and employees. Out of the civilian labor force of 764,000, around 18,910 people are yet to land a job in the state, while the remaining 745,090 are employed.

To those who are looking for UI benefits, check out the New Hampshire UI benefits page.


Hawaii, with a 2.8 percent unemployment rate, stands in the fifth position for the month of May. Although the state is facing some challenges in producing more jobs due to an economic slowdown, it has managed to keep most of its workforce employed. 

The state’s workforce has a strength of over 670,000, out of which over 19,000 are still looking for a job. 


The contribution of these states along with the others has led to the reduction of the unemployment rates to a historic low in the country. A more prolonged performance as this would help create a lot more jobs for future generations.

  1. Are you able to receive unemployment in the state of Ga if you receive lump sum severance (which was the same pay as a 2 week regular paycheck)

    1. Sid,

      The E.U.C(Emergency Unemployment Compensation) remains expired. There is no extension available. Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state by calling them.

    1. Jose,

      We’re not a scam or a fraud website:) has been around for more than 10 years and we’re one of the leading forums for unemployment insurance and unemployment in general. Our daily visitor and patron base is of considerable size and we truly believe in being a center for jobless workers to access resources and share their queries.

      1. I’m confused the article is about extending unemployment benefits in Texas but there hasn’t been any approved Emergency extensions since 2013. Can you clarify this.

        1. Glo,

          The E.U.C(Emergency Unemployment Compensation) remains expired. There is no extension available. Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state by calling them.

  2. I’m attemptiing to file my first weekly claim since my layoff, however, my PIN# is not correct. what do I do to get my correct PIN# , please?

  3. I have exhausted my unemployment benefits in Texas but my calendar year does not end until September. Do I have to wait until the calendar year is over in Texas, to apply for unemployment benefits in New York in which I have available quarters?

    1. Mattie,

      As much as I am aware, UI benefits are only a one-time cycle. Please call the Claims Center for clarification.

  4. Help ran out of unemployment benefits for the pass 8 years i have worked at Hexion speciality chemical plant in Brady Texas how can i get my benefits extended

    1. Roderick,

      The E.U.C(Emergency Unemployment Compensation) remains expired. There is no extension available. Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state by calling them.

    1. Annette,

      You can visit the official website of the Unemployment Office and ‘login’ to check the claim status. Alternatively, you can also call the Claims Center.

      PS: It should not take 6 weeks to process the initial claim. Please chase at regular intervals.

    1. Jocelyn,

      Unemployment is offered to claimants who’re able and available for work. Please call the Unemployment Office to ascertain if you can apply.

  5. I have been working for the same company for the past 11 years. I started out cleaning apartments, then landscaping and finally Asst. Manager for the past seven years. However, the owner/ manager had us all sign papers claiming we were “Independent Contractors.” I worked Monday thru Friday from 8am – 5pm the entire 11 years. Obviously, in reality, we had Never been “Independent Contractors.”
    Finally, October 2018 we became employee’s. On May 10, 2019 he sold the business which puts us all out of work. I tried filing for unemployment, but, I don’t have enough quarters in. Assuming I’m still out of work, can I wait for the next quarter to end, thus giving me the 2 quarters I need or will it not make a difference.

    1. Lea,

      Why don’t you look at alternate based period? Please use the link below to access the Base Period calculator.

  6. I have been working as an hourly employee for the last 4 months. Currently the board of the nonprofit agency came to me and told me that I had to file a 1099 or go to part time or find a new job. I have a scheduled time that I report to work. What are the laws here in Florida about who can receive a 1099

  7. I am unemployed and currently going to a community college. How can I apply for federal assistance?

    1. Carol,

      If you’re able and available for full-time employment, you can directly go to the website of the Unemployment Office and apply.

  8. I have worked in AZ since March 2016. However, I moved lived and worked for my employer in CA since 08/02/1982. Can I apply for Cali unemployment benefits?

    1. Robert,

      You should be applying from the state where your employment was based. Employers generally remit unemployment taxes to the state where the employee is based.

      1. How long does it take Washington state unemployment to deposit your back pay after they receive the determination letter from OAH stating I won my appeal?

  9. I have been trying for over a month to file and I still do not seem to be able to do it, but I finally got to the correct place, I think.

  10. Cumberland NJ Unemployment Center kept me on hold for 2 hours; I finally had someone answer my call, after providing my information and question regarding the status of my NJ Unemployment Claim the representative disconnected my call.

  11. Excellent list of things to help execute better. Even taking 3 or 4 of these that one does not currently utilize could help immensely.

    1. How did you calculate the total weekly Illinois benefit of $1495? Also, why isn’t Washington and Minnesota listed in your top 5 states with the highest paid unemployment insurance compensation?

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