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Good Graph Friday: Best (and worst) states for job-seekers

Many of us know by now that it's been better to live in North Dakota than in Nevada during the course of this recession and weak recovery. But it's still startling to see just how much better off jobseekers were in the cold North than in the arid West.

The Economic Policy Institute has created a map highlighting percentages of jobs lost in each state between December 2007, when the recession began, and September 2010, the most recent data available.

Nevada has lost 14.2 percent of its jobs during that period, while North Dakota actually saw a 2.2 percent gain in jobs.

Other states where unemployed people might have a better time finding a job include South Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming and New Hampshire, all of which have seen job losses of less than 3 percent, according to the EPI data. Alaska also has added a small number of jobs.

Arizona and Michigan should probably not be destination spots for jobseekers: Both have been among the harder-hit states, losing about 10 percent of their jobs since the recession began nearly three years ago.

Although the recession officially ended in June 2009, that hardly signaled the end of economic hard times, particularly for jobseekers.

Although some employers have cautiously added jobs in recent months, national unemployment remains painfully high.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday that 151,000 jobs were added nationwide in October. That was an encouraging sign, even though the unemployment rate stayed steady at 9.6 percent and 14.8 million people remain out of work.

The state-by-state data for October has not yet been released.

For more detailed state data and to see the map in interactive form, click here.

You can also view a county-by-county map here.