The US Department of Labor has listed the city of Ames as having the lowest unemployment rate in the nation. According to the report from studies completed in November 2017, Ames unemployment rate is only 1.5%, the lowest in the nation. Where was the highest? Yuma, Arizona and El Centro, California hold that dubious honor with a 19.8% unemployment rate. Iowa’s unemployment rate is 2.9%, a percentage point below the national average of 3.9%.