Labor force participation in the U.S. varies between 56.1 percent of the civilian population in Mississippi and 71.0 percent in Washington D.C. According to numbers by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, only two states (and D.C.) broke the threshold of 70 percent: Minnesota and Iowa. Labor force participation was the highest in the Midwestern states and the lowest in the South.
According to Brookings Institute, labor force participation is generally falling in the U.S., although that was dampened slightly since 2014 when strong job growth started being recorded in the country. Because of the aging of industrialized societies, falling labor force participation rates in the U.S. are mirrored in developed nations around the world.
Labor force participation is defined as the share of the civilian population that is either employed or looking for work, i.e. potentially part of the labor market.