N.J. ranks low among states with biggest unemployment increases

Businesses throughout the nation are needing to temporarily or permanently lay off workers due to the economic hardships of the coronavirus — and with that comes extremely high volumes of unemployment claims.

An updated WalletHub analysis released on Thursday ranked the states with the biggest increase in unemployment due to COVID-19, and New Jersey came in at No. 40 on the list.

To determine the states with the largest unemployment increases, the personal finance website compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across two key metrics comparing unemployment claim increases for the week of March 30 to both the same week in 2019 and the first week of 2020.

Increases in New Jersey unemployment:

  • 36% increase in unemployment claims (2020 vs. 2019);
  • 74% increase in unemployment claims (April vs. January 2020).

Here are the Top 10 states with the biggest unemployment increases:

  1. Louisiana;
  2. New Hampshire;
  3. Virginia;
  4. Georgia;
  5. Mississippi;
  6. Michigan;
  7. North Carolina;
  8. Nevada;
  9. North Dakota;
  10. Indiana.

States with the smallest unemployment increases:

  1. Connecticut;
  2. Oregon;
  3. Wyoming;
  4. Wisconsin;
  5. West Virginia;
  6. Alaska;
  7. New York;
  8. Pennsylvania;
  9. Montana;
  10. Illinois.

Red vs. Blue states?

“With an average unemployment rank of 25, Red States suffered a higher increase of their unemployment during the coronavirus outbreak than Blue States, which rank 27 on average,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “The lower the rank, the higher the increase in initial unemployment claims that state received during the coronavirus pandemic.”

To see the full list and methodology, click here.