13 of the best cities for jobs

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Which cities have the lowest unemployment rates?

Many factors contribute to making a city a desirable place to live. Proximity to family or friends, affordable cost of living, strong real-estate market and weather are just a few examples.

Another reason someone might reside in a specific locale is career opportunity. While certain areas may have better prospects for specific fields or industries, others are stronger employment markets overall.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment rates were lower in January than a year earlier in 345 of the 372 metropolitan areas, higher in 16 areas and unchanged in 11. A total of 201 areas recorded January unemployment rates below the U.S. figure of 8.8 percent, 162 areas reported rates above it, and nine areas had rates equal to that of the country.

To get a sense of the cities with job markets that are recovering more quickly than others, here’s a list of 13 cities with the lowest unemployment rates as of January 2012.

Best area unemployment rates*:
This list is ranked solely on jobless rates; job seekers should consider a variety of other factors when determining a good place for employment.

1. Lincoln, Neb.
Unemployment rate: 3.8 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.8
Mean annual earnings: $39,310

2. Bismarck, N.D.
Unemployment rate: 3.8 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.6
Mean annual earnings: $39,110

3. Midland, Texas
Unemployment rate: 4.1 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.8
Mean annual earnings: $44,660

4. Fargo, N.D.
Unemployment rate: 4.2 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.4
Mean annual earnings: $39,180

5. Ames, Iowa
Unemployment rate: 4.3 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.7
Mean annual earnings: $42,290

6. Iowa City, Iowa
Unemployment rate: 4.4 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.4
Mean annual earnings: $44,170

7. Sioux Falls, S.D.
Unemployment rate: 4.5 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.9
Mean annual earnings: $37,880

8. Logan, Utah
Unemployment rate: 4.6 percent
Percent change from last year: -1.1
Mean annual earnings: $34,950

9. Burlington-South Burlington, Vt.
Unemployment rate: 4.6 percent
Percent change from last year: -1.0
Mean annual earnings: $47,420

10. Rapid City, S.D.
Unemployment rate: 4.7 percent
Percent change from last year: -1.2
Mean annual earnings: $35,330

11. Columbia, Mo.
Unemployment rate: 4.8 percent
Percent change from last year: -2.0
Mean annual earnings: $37,780

12. Portsmouth, N.H.
Unemployment rate: 4.8 percent
Percent change from last year: -0.6
Mean annual earnings: $49,050

13. Odessa, Texas
Unemployment rate: 4.9 percent
Percent change from last year: -1.9
Mean annual earnings: $40,540

*Unemployment rate and mean annual earnings from the Bureau of Labor statistics.

2 Comments
  1. Pingback: 13 of the best cities for jobs | The Work Buzz | The Best Cities In The USA

  2. Pingback: 13 of the Best Cities for Jobs - Career Girl Network | Career Girl Network

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