Connecticut ranks #18 in the nation in a measure of Payroll to Population (P2P), based on an analysis of the nation’s 50 states by the Gallup organization. The P2P metric tracks the percentage of the adult population aged 18 and older who are employed full-time for an employer, for at least 30 hours per week. The rankings cover calendar year 2014. North Dakota (54 percent) had the nation’s highest Payroll to Population employment rate. A cluster of states in the northern Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions -- including Nebraska, Minnesota, Kansas, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado and Iowa -- all made the top 10 on this measure, according to Gallup. West Virginia (35.6 percent) had the lowest P2P rate of all the states for the second consecutive year.
Connecticut was tied with Vermont with a P2P level of 44.3 percent. Among the New England states, Connecticut and Vermont ranked in the middle, with New Hampshire ranked at #10, Massachusetts at #15, Maine at #22, and Rhode Island at #34.
The year-long results are based on Gallup daily tracking interviews throughout 2014 with 353,736 U.S. adults. The payroll-employed data does not include adults who are self-employed, work fewer than 30 hours per week, who are unemployed, or are out of the workforce.
The differences in P2P rates across states may reflect several factors, Gallup points out, including the overall employment situation and the population's demographic composition. States with large older and retired populations, for example, can be expected to have a lower percentage of adults working full time. Connecticut has the 7th oldest population in the nation, which may influence the state’s overall ranking. The two states with the lowest P2P in 2014, West Virginia and Florida, have two of the largest proportions of residents aged 65 and older, at 17.3 percent and 16.9 percent, respectively.
Regardless of the underlying reason, Gallup indicates that the P2P rate provides “a good reflection of a state's economic vitality.” Gallup also notes that P2P shows a stronger relationship than do unemployment rates with other important economic indicators, such as state GDP per capita.
In the overall rankings, Washington, D.C., had the highest P2P rate of any area in the country, at 56.4 percent, but Gallup points out that “it is unique in being the only entirely urban region in the survey, heavily dominated by the presence of the federal government, and with one of the lowest percentages of residents aged 65 and older (12.3 percent).”