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Top 5 States in US with Lowest Unemployment Rate

Updated : August 4th, 2020


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.

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  1. I had trouble getting my proof of self-employment to upload in secure file exchange and finally got it submitted by 12:06 am , 6 minutes late. What are the possibilities that they will deny it? I have received unemployment from March 2020 to some of Jan and some in Feb 2021. Most of Dec, Jan, Feb, March, & april were stopped for this proof of employment.
    Also, I see proof of Income as a 2nd issue but it is always on there. That was not on my TO DO list.
    I feel for u all on ID.ME…

    Anyone trying to reach UI, call their number, press 2 or 3 (questions abt filing a claim?) and then wait thru the message. At the end of it, u will be connected to a live person! I promise.. don’t push another button.. I’ve done it 4 times and it never failed.

    We lost our home, my ex took my child…. (kept her after a visit and called cps facilitating drama while the cops wouldn’t give her back without paperwork locked up in the court house..shut down for covid) I raised her by myself for 12 years & now she is with a violent alcoholic and parental alienating parent .. ….my dog, my 9-year sweet little best friend, was attacked, passing away 3 days later.. all in this time frame.
    But! It will all be ok. I have faith.

    Be grateful for your life and all that is in it today. What u dwell on daily will be your strength or weakness.
    Good luck to all of u.
    And thank you, Jeff, for responding out here. It is appreciated!
    Davulia S.

  2. I filed over two months ago. I have not received any information. My status says “pending resolution”. I have no way of contacting anyone. My position was eliminated at my job and I submitted the documentations online. I dont know what else I can do.

  3. I have been apply Ohio Pua unemployment since July 5th still pending issues. Upload what they ask for when ever I call says your case is in Adjudication. Very very frustrated, financially I am broke. Health issues. Waiting a long period.Don’t know what I will do ?

    1. Nafisa,

      I can understand your situation. There will be a delay considering the number of applications that are being processed. Please continue chasing the office/check your status online at regular intervals until payments normalize.

    2. Same here since Feb 2021 turned in all the documents still pending issues 3 months now. When you call they tell you to be patient. Pulling my hair out it’s so frustrating.

  4. I was receiving PUA unemployment. they made me file for a new claim in February. Now I am in adjudication even though I gave all the same information from my previous claim. Have been adjudication since February and I call and they say they will put in a ticket to have an Adjudicator call me. Nothing. I am wondering If I can go down to to Maryland Unemployment Office and demand that someone talk with me to release my claim for payment. It’s been 56 days. I read that they have a maximum of 45 days.

    1. Luis,

      Your adjudicator may be inundated with pending cases. Please continue to follow up (if you have the contact details) or consider the option of visiting an office in the vicinity if safe and feasible.

    2. t sounds just like mine only im disqualified yet actie every till sept 4th . they haven’t asked me for anything! i file then its disqualified yet im told im ok and have nothing to do bit wait for an answer? answer to what? they switched my program and all and asked me to provide proof for a claim that wa denied al eady back in 2018! deny me once and then again perhaps? lol idk

  5. My mom had unemployment in Florida. She just recently moved temporally to California with a sister since she needs assistance, and now the website is telling her she cannot do anything because she is register in another state. Can she keep filing unemployment in Florida, even if she is living and register now in another state? how is the process to change the unemployment? I tried calling and there is no answer. Thank you!

    1. Stephanie,

      Please ask your mother to consider transferring the UI benefits from FL to CA (details will be available on either of the websites). If there are benefits weeks left in the account, she will be able to claim them.

    1. Leatha,

      UI benefits are offered to claimants who lose employment involuntarily and be able to and available for work.

  6. I lived in ga in 2019 and move to florida in 2020 and work for the xmas months in nov-dec. I was told to do a combine wage claim. my question is which state do i file the claim in?

  7. I filed for pua in Ohio back in October 2020.My claim has been in ajudacatuon since 11/1/20.So 2 to 6 weeks is a total understatement! When I call.i am told to basically hurry up and wait some more.I have recently been redetermined and my claim is allowed.but I have one pending issue.How long is too long?

    1. Nicole,

      Unfortunately, nobody has an answer. There are perhaps thousands of pending applications. Please consider the option of visiting an office in the vicinity if safe and feasible.

  8. If you claim your weeks for unemployment and for the next 2 months you still have not received your money. Where can you go in volusia county to talk with a live person

      1. HI Jeff,
        I applied back in Dec 5th, 2020 and I haven’t received any correspondence, is there a local office that I can make an appt to make certain my claim is right.

        1. Adam,

          You can consider visiting an office in the vicinity if safe and feasible (details will be available on the Unemployment Office’s website).

  9. On NYS DOL website, my claim is saying current yet the information is for my old claim with 0 days remaining despite receiving 2 weeks of payments on the new claim and I was able to certify last night. I haven’t received anything; no letters or emails.

  10. I was disqualified for UI benefits for not providing an ID and other forms of identification. How do I fix this?

        1. Gary,

          You may not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

    1. Hi Mike, I’m in NYS and was at the end of my BYE on 3/14, I was still certifying but wasn’t getting paid. I found out I had to file a new claim because my other was exhausted. I’m still waiting on approval. Maybe you have to file a new claim. I hope this helps.

  11. They say 2-6 weeks it’s more accurate to say 2-6 months; and when you call many of them are rude and unwilling to assist!

  12. someone needs to look into Sharon L. Anton gillette, wyo. or dickinson, nd she is a fraud and has done so many fraudulent things and please look into her

    1. Annette,

      Please report it to the Fraud Division of the Unemployment Office in your state. You can report on the website.

  13. I worked part time for thee years here in florida. I’m currently not working. I’m also retired and collects social security.
    My question is
    Am I qualified to file for unemployment ?

    1. Ruby,

      To be eligible, you’re required to have sufficient hours and earnings. Please use the “Benefits Calculator” available on this website.

  14. So adjudication takes 8 to 12 weeks. Oh okay, that explains why I havent received payment since July. That surely helps just like the rest of the information that you give. And by the way. What’s the NEW reason you can’t get through to the Call Center.

    1. Maria,
      I have gotten through to the call center (live agent) every time i’ve tried calling within the last 2 weeks. The number to a live agent (follow the prompts carefully) is (667)-207-6520. i have gotten through within 10 to 15 mins with each call i had made!

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