According to an article on Bloomberg.com, the jobless rate rose in 29 of states across the country last month. California, Delaware, South Carolina and Florida were all among the list of states with record unemployment rates, while Michigan, Nevada, and Rhode Island had the highest jobless rates with 15.1%, 13%, and 12.9% respectively.
The national rate last month reached a 26-year high of 10.2 percent, weighing on consumer spending that accounts for about 70 percent of the economy. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said Nov. 17 that joblessness “likely will decline only slowly,” a reason policy makers will keep interest rates near zero to ensure growth is sustained.
“We’ve had a surprisingly sharp jump in the jobless rate,” said Richard DeKaser, president of Woodley Park Research in Washington. “Businesses have truly been doing an extraordinary job of wringing out productivity from the labor force.”
Stocks fell for a third day, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index declining 0.3 percent to 1,091.38 at 4:03 p.m. in New York. Dell Inc., the third-largest maker of personal computers, dropped 10 percent after reporting a 54 percent drop in profit.