Being jobless is always tough. In some states, though, it's tougher than in others. Many provide barely enough unemployment income to let people scrape by. Where the unemployment rate is high, the competition for jobs is that much rougher. In states with a big gap between the richest and poorest, the psychological toll of joblessness can be greater, with high-paying jobs hard to get and low-paying jobs unequal to the bills. Across the board, nearly 11 percent in cuts in federally funded unemployment benefits went into effect on March 31, further shrinking resources.
For each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, we considered the unemployment insurance benefit, the unemployment rate as of March 2013 and the wealth disparity expressed as a ratio of rich households to poor ones; a ratio over 1 is high. The result is our list of the 10 worst states to be unemployed in, from No. 10 (bad) to No. 1 (worst of the worst.)
Please see the final slide for details of the methodology.