Paul Davidson, USA TODAY
Unemployment rates fell in 37 states and the District of Columbia last month despite the slight rise in the national jobless rate, the government reported Tuesday.
Unemployment increased in seven states and was unchanged in six.
The national unemployment rate edged up to 7.9% from 7.8% in October despite solid job growth of 171,000 as discouraged workers resumed their job searches, the Labor Department reported earlier this month. The labor force -- which is made up of those employed and looking for work -- increased by 578,000.
The unemployment rate fell most sharply in South Carolina, from 9.1% to 8.6%, followed by Alaska's decline to 7.1% from 7.5%, and Wisconsin's, to 6.9% from 7.3%.
Nevada continued to have the highest unemployment rate at 11.5%, followed by Rhode Island at 10.4% and California's 10.1%. North Dakota, which is in the midst of an oil drilling boom, continued to have the lowest rate at 3.1%.