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Unemployment fell nationally, but it’s still 10 percent or more in 28 metro areas

Job seekers in line at a job fair. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The national unemployment rate dropped a tenth of a percentage point from August to September to 7.2 percent, but nearly 30 metropolitan regions are still suffering from high unemployment.

The elevated unemployment in those areas is a feature of what has been an uneven recovery in many ways. While 28 metro areas had unemployment at or above 10 percent, 41 others had rates below 5 percent in August, according to new government data that came out Monday. The upshot is that most of metropolitan areas tracked by the Bureau of Labor Statistics — 311 of the 372 — saw unemployment decline from the year before.

The nation’s 49 most-populous metro areas — those with a population of one million or more — followed a similar trend. Most saw unemployment decline, while only five saw unemployment increase.

California was home to the most metro areas with unemployment at or above 10 percent. Nearly half — 13 of 28 — were in that state. Illinois was home to four of those areas, while Arizona, New Jersey and Texas each hosted two metro areas with unemployment of 10 percent or more. North Carolina, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Georgia and Florida each had one metro area with similarly high unemployment rates in August.

These are those 28 metro areas:


And here are the 41 areas with sub-5 percent unemployment:

Niraj Chokshi is a general assignment reporter for The Washington Post.



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