Special Report

50 Counties With the Highest Unemployment

The Labor Department announced in early August that the U.S. economy added 157,000 jobs in July. The announcement marked the 94th consecutive month of job growth, the longest period of uninterrupted employment growth in U.S. history.

Not every part of the United States has benefited equally from the job growth of recent years. In some counties, unemployment remains higher than the nationwide recent peak of 10.6% in the wake of the recession.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed May 2018 unemployment rates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to identify the 50 counties with the highest unemployment. Unemployment rates on this list are not seasonally adjusted and range from 7.7% to over 20% — well more than double the 3.6% national unemployment rate that month. In states without counties, county equivalents were considered. Counties, boroughs, and parishes are listed along with their administrative capital city, or seat. For unorganized boroughs in Alaska without an administrative capital, the largest city is listed.

Nearly every county on this list is in the western or southern United States. Only a handful are in the Midwest, and none are in the Northeast.

Click here to see the 50 counties with the highest unemployment.
Click here to see our detailed findings and methodology.

Correction: Census data on population, poverty, and median household income are unavailable for Petersburg Borough and Kusilvak Census Area in Alaska, as well as Oglala Lakota County, South Dakota. In a previous version of this story, those figures were incorrectly listed as zeros. The error has been corrected and they are now listed as N/A.