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As a follow up to their May jobs report, WalletHub takes a look at the state of unemployment, as offices begin to open and bring employees back to the office for the new normal or a hybrid–work-from-home and office combined.

Compared to numbers from the height of the pandemic, new unemployment claims for the week of June 6 were 78% lower, according to WalletHub, which released updated rankings in its States Whose Unemployment Claims are Recovering the Quickest report.

“Right now, it seems that the process of reopening states has had a positive effect on unemployment, as employers are rehiring workers who were temporarily laid off,” said WalletHub analyst, Jill Gonzalez.

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“It’s important to continue on this path. To do that, and avoid another lockdown at the same time, both the authorities as well as business owners should take steps to ensure the safety of customers and employees. Frequent cleaning and disinfecting surfaces and wearing a mask when coming in contact with other people are just some of the measures that can be taken to keep COVID-19 numbers from rising.”

WalletHub looked at each state and noted which are “most recovered” and which are “least recovered”. For the week of June 6, it found:

Most Recovered

  1. Connecticut
  2. Vermont
  3. Rhode Island
  4. New Jersey
  5. Pennsylvania
  6. Michigan
  7. Delaware
  8. Massachusetts
  9. Wyoming
  10. Montana

Least Recovered
42. Tennessee
43. Alaska
44. North Carolina
45. Virginia
46. Louisiana
47. Mississippi
48. Indiana
49. Florida
50. Georgia
51. Oklahoma

In May, the US actually gained 2.5 million non-farm payroll jobs, but there are still 21 million people who are unemployed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

For the week of June 6, there were 1.5 million new unemployment claims nationwide, considerably lower than the 6.9 million new unemployment claims filed at the peak of the pandemic, a 78% reduction.

In addition to ranking most and least recovered states, WalletHub charted:

  • Changes in unemployment claims, comparing the week of June 15 to June 17, 2019;

  • Changes in unemployment claims, comparing the week of June 15 to January 1, 2020; and

  • Changes in unemployment claims, comparing the weeks of March 16, 2020 to June 15, 2020, compared to the weeks of March 18, 2019 to June 17, 2019.

The report noted that:

  • The coronavirus wiped out all job gains, since the Great Recession (total job losses then, 8.8 million)

  • Blue states unemployment claims (78%) are recovering the quickest; red states were at 71.2%

The larger the number, the lower the unemployment claims in that state. Red and blue states were determined by how the state voted in the 2016 election. The report also offered analysis by 50 different experts.