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April 2010: The 9 Best and Worst Cities to Find a Job

lincoln memorial By CareerCast.com/JobSerf Employment Index

Considering that most U.S. regions experienced steady, if unremarkable, gains in April, it comes as little surprise that job growth in major cities mirrored the national trend. In fact, of the 30 metro areas surveyed by the CareerCast/JobSerf Index, all managed to either gain jobs or hold their ground last month. However, while Washington, D.C. and Boston finished in first and second place, respectively, for the 10th month in a row, that isn't to say that there wasn't movement among the best and worst U.S. cities to find a job.

Baltimore's hiring index score increased by six points, but job availability in the city was outpaced by growth in Atlanta, causing the two cities to trade places. And after finishing as one of the 10 worst cities to find a job as recently as January, Hartford continued to gain ground as it rose to 12th place, putting the city on pace to crack the top 10 within the next two months.

  • Washington, D.C.

    Overall Index Rank: 1st
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    Washington, D.C., has led all cities with the most job openings per capita for an amazing 10 months in a row, and continues to gain ground. After the pace of growth slowed in March, a surge in April has helped the Nation’s Capital build on its lead over 2nd place Boston once again.

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  • Boston, MA

    Overall Index Rank: 2nd
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    After an impressive gain in March, Boston was on pace to overtake Washington, D.C., as the best U.S. city to find a job. However, Boston lost ground in April as job availability grew by 9 points (compared to D.C.’s 17). At this rate, the city will remain in 2nd place for the foreseeable future.

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  • San Francisco, CA

    Overall Index Rank: 3rd
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    With an impressive, 10 point gain (Index score: 98) in hiring activity in April, San Francisco is on pace to become just the 3rd metro area to score above 100 on the CareerCast.com/JobSerf Index.

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  • Seattle, WA

    Overall Index Rank: 4th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    After enjoying a 10 point gain in March, Seattle’s job growth slowed slightly last month, as hiring activity increased by 6 points. In addition, after an impressive performance by Atlanta, the Emerald City is on pace fall out of 4th place as early as next month.

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  • Atlanta, GA

    Overall Index Rank: 5th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +1
    City Fact:

    Atlanta’s performance in April was second only to Washington, D.C., as the Georgia city boasted an impressive, 11 point gain and rose to 5th place on the Best Cities list.

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  • Baltimore, MD

    Overall Index Rank: 6th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: -1
    City Fact:

    Gaining 6 points, Baltimore actually enjoyed a larger increase in per capita job availability last month than in March. However, the city was outpaced by Atlanta’s impressive performance, which caused it to fall to 6th place overall.

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  • Chicago, IL

    Overall Index Rank: 7th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    Chicago’s 7 point gain the 4th highest improvement in hiring activity of any city in the top 10. However, this was not enough to move the city out of 7th place.

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  • New York, NY

    Overall Index Rank: 8th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    After suffering declines at the beginning of the year, hiring in New York improved for the 3rd straight month. Gaining an additional 5 points, the city remains in 8th place for the 4rd month in a row.

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  • Denver, CO

    Overall Index Rank: 9th
    Ranking Change From Last Month: +/- 0
    City Fact:

    Of all the cities in the top 10, Denver saw the 2nd smallest increase in per capita job availability last month. However, considering that the city behind it has the smallest increase overall, the Mile High City is in little danger of falling out of 9th place.

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