Unemployment rates fell in 28 states in October while nonfarm payroll employment increased in 34 states, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.
Illustrating the generally better trend, the states that have long held the highest and lowest jobless rates in the country each saw improvement last month.
Nevada, which has led the nation in unemployment nearly every month since early 2010, had a rate of 9.3%. That's a tenth of a percentage point below September's and a full percentage point lower than October 2012.
The Silver State is recovering slowly from the housing bust and recession. Construction jobs are still more than 60% off their pre-recession highs and even the much-stronger leisure and hospitality sector remains 5.5% below its 2007 jobs peak.
North Dakota, its fortunes lifted by an energy boom, has enjoyed the nation's lowest unemployment rate since late 2008 and kept that distinction in October. At 2.7%, its jobless rate was a tenth of a point lower than September's and half a point lower than a year earlier.
The national jobless rate last month was 7.3%, up from 7.2% in September.