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article imageNorth Dakota extends lowest state unemployment rate to 69 months

By Ben Morris     Sep 21, 2014 in Politics
Bismarck - While the nation struggles with unemployment, and small new job numbers, one state stands alone in job growth. For more than five years, North Dakota has lead the nation with the lowest rate of unemployment.
As the Washington Post noted, North Dakota's oil boom takes a lot of the credit for the job numbers. While American oil production has declined by close to 50 percent since the 1970's, the Bakkan Shale formation has allowed oil production to double in the state in just three years, helping North Dakotan's find jobs.
The two counties home to the oil field have an unemployment rate under 1 percent. While men initially soaked up the new found jobs, women are increasingly joining their male counterparts in the oil fields. In July women searching for oil jobs increased by more than 30 percent from the previous month. With workers making upwards to $78,000 annually, many in the state are above water. Economist Dean Bangsund,of North Dakota State University told Fox Business, “The oil industry expanded employment rapidly, and housing is in short supply.Overall permanent employment in the industry will be higher than what we traditionally see in the state. We also expect total regular employment to be sustainable.”
Not only has the oil boom kept citizens employed, low taxes have been credited with keeping employment high.
While a majority of states dealt with deficits, North Dakota faced a budget surplus at the early years of the recession. The extra money allowed for state legislators to cut income and property taxes by almost $400 million. The North Dakota Chamber of Commerce used Minnesota as a contrast to why families in North Dakota are better off than their neighbors.
In a blog post from May, the Chamber noted, "A family of four in Minnesota making $100,000 per year, itemization not considered, pays $4,409 in state taxes. If this family lived in North Dakota, they would only pay $941 in state taxes. If the same family made $150,000 per year, they would pay $7,934 in Minnesota state taxes compared to $2,013 in North Dakota." Depending on your income, if you live in North Dakota the individual tax rate ranges from 1.22 percent to 3.22 percent, depending on how much a single or married person takes home per year, which makes the highest percentage of income tax in North Dakota, smaller than the lowest income tax rate in Minnesota.
In a study by CNBC, North Dakota was ranked 10th in best states to do business in. Using metrics like economy, infrastructure and quality of life, North Dakota ranked higher than California, and Florida, by placing 7th in business friendliness and 5th in quality of life. Forbes ranks North Dakota higher in their list of most business friendly states, placing the state in second place behind only Virginia.
Studies have shown low tax rates have caused Americans to move to those states to find employment. As Forbes noted, "According to the latest IRS data, Texas, which does not levy a personal income tax, gained almost a million new taxpayers over the past ten years. Florida, another no-income-tax state, gained well over a million taxpayers during that same time period. California by contrast, which has the highest personal income tax rate, lost more than 1.5 million taxpayers over that same period."
North Dakota's Low Unemployment Rates | FindTheBest
Thousands of new residents are flocking to North Dakota where the state's economic growth five times the national average.The economy has boomed so high, the state has surpassed places like New York, and Massachusetts in personal income, with an average income of more than $57,000.
More about North dakota, state unemployment, business taxes, Jobs, Oil boom
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