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11 Best States for Jobs

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(Related: 12 Best US Cities to Start a Career)

It’s that time again: job-hunting season. Newly minted grads — except, perhaps, for those pursuing a bit of summer vacation before plunging headfirst into the working world — are scouring websites in search of the best possible opportunities in their chosen fields, and probably wondering as they do so where the best opportunities are located and whether they’ll like their new homes if they follow employment to a new place to live.

They’re also probably hoping to escape possible serious mistakes in choosing a job, or a place, that stifles rather than encourages career growth and contentment in their new surroundings.

With that in mind, WalletHub compiled a list of 33 essential criteria that can determine whether the job market, or the regional amenities, are positives or negatives. It then scored all 50 states on these indicators of job-market strength, opportunity and a healthy economy, including employment growth, median annual income and average commute time.

Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Indeed.com, Gallup-Healthways, United Health Foundation, Brandwatch, The Pew Charitable Trusts, National Conference of State Legislatures, Chegg, Council for Community and Economic Research, Tax Credits for Workers and Their Families, ITEP, Movement Advancement Project, The Brookings Institution, Industry Dive, Oxfam America, Glassdoor, The Center for Neighborhood Technology and its own research, WalletHub organized its findigs broadly under two headings: job market and economic environment.

Then all subcategories, from job security to employer-based retirement access and benefits to industry variety, underemployment, share of workers living in poverty, average starting salary, average commute time and commuter-friendly jobs, were ranked and points assigned, all of which then went into the overall score and the ranking in both categories.

Check out the gallery for the 11 states that came out on top when it comes to jobs.

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