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Which States Are Bouncing Back?

After April’s record-low job seeker numbers, the early May numbers are showing there is reason to be cautiously optimistic.

The re-emergence of the labor market

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  • The labor market may have hit bottom in April and is on its way up–but very slowly.
  • Most states are making slight gains, more so in the states that reopened earliest.
  • Re-emergence spurs uptick of job seeker activity.


+7.6% increase in job
seeker activity in May

Job seeker activity graph.

Talroo Insights: Activity measured by high-intent job seeker clicks.

By the numbers

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38 Million

people have filed for jobless aid since Covid-19 hit

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3 Trillion

in aid has been spent on individuals and businesses through the CARES Act


50 States

at least partially reopened

Scissor cutting yellow ribbon icon.

* Sources: Labor Department, US Treasury Department, New York Times.

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In April, all 50 states had reduced job seeker activity from the month prior. In May, 33 states had increased job seeker activity from the month prior. The re-opening of many states has started to turn the tide of job seeker activity.

Brief timeline

Georgia icon.

April 24th

Georgia is the first state to nearly completely reopen. Restaurants, salons, tattoo parlors and other “high-touch” business are open – with guidelines.

Texas icon.

May 1st

Texas becomes the next high-profile state to reopen, with capacity restrictions on restaurants. Salons and gyms will still need to wait a few more weeks.

California icon.

May 4th

California, the earliest adopter of a lock-down, starts to allow construction and other outdoor business to resume.

Florida icon.

May 4th

Florida allows restaurants and retail stores to reopen at limited capacity, as well as beaches and outdoor recreation areas.

Illinois icon.

May 20th

Illinois, under increasing pressure to reopen, announces restaurants and state parks will start to open.

USA icon.

May 21st

All 50 states have now at least partially reopened.

Some of the biggest US states
start to bounce back

(but not all)

% change May vs. April 2020 (data to May 18)

US map showing state jobseeker recovery from COVID-19.

*Talroo Insights: Activity measured by high-intent job seeker clicks.

Job seeker
activity overall

Texas: +1.4%

California: -9.9%

Florida: +7.0%

Illinois: +1.5%

Georgia: +5.8%

Warehouse / Logistics

Plus 12 percent circle chart.


Plus 13 percent circle chart.


Plus 6 percent circle chart.


Plus 69 percent circle chart.



Work from home icon.
+5% Texas
+13% California
+18% Florida
+31% Illinois


Caregiving icon.

Florida: +41%

Illinois: +12%


While these numbers may change due to potential regional COVID breakouts, current data shows...


Despite restrictions, Illinois job seeker numbers are inching up.


As one of the most cautious states, California has not started to truly come back yet.


Texas is slowly starting to trend upward, and the worst may be behind it.


Florida’s relatively early reopening has started to increase job seeker numbers.


Georgia’s early reopening increased its overall search numbers, but the warehouse industry is disproportionately up.

Companies hiring
now nationally

Home Depot logo. Cracker Barrel logo. Pizza Hut logo. UPS logo. Aerotek logo.
Army National Guard logo. Lowe’s logo. Amazon logo. Spectrum logo. FedEx logo.

For a deeper dive, visit our previous infographics:

COVID-19: Who’s Looking. Who’s Hiring.


COVID-19: Job Trends & Market Milestones

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*All data from Talroo Insights unless otherwise noted.

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