The latest unemployment report showed that the jobless rate ticked down to 6.1 percent. But not everyone in the US is feeling that much relief. The jobless rates in some states are far higher — Nevada is currently at 7.9 percent, and Rhode Island is at 8.2.
The national jobless rate is one big indicator that represents what's going on in all of the smaller state economies in the US, both bad and good. Real estate brokerage site Movoto has compiled more than three decades of this data into one map, tracking the unemployment rate by state from the Carter Administration to today. During that period, the nation went through five recessions, as counted by the National Bureau of Economic Research.
The map picks up on many sorts of things that can send a state's jobless rate spiking — watch for Louisiana flickering darker in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina or for the beating Michigan's auto industry took in the early-1980s recession — and drives home the point that even when the economy looks pretty good, it can still be pretty bad in some places. The reverse is true, too — look at how oil-rich North Dakota stays pale throughout the Great Recession.
Movoto says it made the map as part of a project to "analyze the impact of presidencies" on the unemployment rate — hence the presidents at the bottom of the map. And while presidents pursue particular economic agendas, many experts agree that presidents aren't all that responsible for the unemployment rate at any given time.