Employment Situation in July: State-Level Analysis


Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 47 states and the District of Columbia in July compared to the previous month while three states (Oklahoma, Kentucky, and Tennessee) lost jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 943,000 in July, following an upwardly revised increase of 938,000 jobs in June.

On a month-over-month basis, employment data was strong in California, which added 114,400 jobs, followed by Texas (+80,900) and North Carolina (+75,600). Oklahoma, Kentucky, and Tennessee lost a total of 13,700 jobs, where the largest decline was reported in Tennessee (-6,100).  In percentage terms, Vermont employment increased by 2.3% while Kentucky reported a 0.3% decline between June and July.

Year-over-year ending in July, 7.3 million jobs have been recovered marking the economic rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic induced recession. All the states and District of Columbia added jobs compared to a year ago. The range of job gains spanned 864,400 jobs in California to 8,300 jobs added in Wyoming. In percentage terms, Hawaii reported the highest increase by 10.0%, while Oklahoma increased by 1.6% compared to a year ago.


Across the 48 states which reported construction sector jobs data—which includes both residential as well as non-residential construction— 29 states reported an increase in July compared to June, while 17 states lost construction sector jobs. Kansas and Tennessee reported no change. North Carolina added 4,300 construction jobs while Colorado lost 1,600. Overall, the construction industry gained 11,000 jobs in July compared to the previous month. In percentage terms, New Jersey increased by 2.7% while New Hampshire reported a decline of 2.2% between June and July.

Year-over-year, construction sector jobs in the U.S. increased by 224,000, which is a 3.1% increase compared to the July 2020 level. California added 39,900 jobs, which was the largest gain of any state, while New York lost 3,600 jobs, which was the largest decline. In percentage terms, Rhode Island had the highest annual growth rate in the construction sector by 15.1%. Over this period, Wyoming reported the largest decline at 4.3%.


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