After easing for four months, the nation's economic stress worsened in June because more bankruptcies in the West and foreclosures outside the Sun Belt outweighed lower unemployment, according to The Associated Press' monthly analysis of conditions around the country.
The setback halted a drop in month-to-month stress readings that had begun in February. In May, economic stress had declined from the previous month in 33 states. And in April, stress fell in every state but two.
But in June, bankruptcy rates rose in Utah, California, Colorado and Idaho. Higher foreclosures spread to the Midwest, particularly Illinois. This occurred even as foreclosures eased in states that have suffered most from the housing bust, such as Arizona, California, Florida and Nevada.
It's an economically stressful summer in Privatopia -- the states where the misery index is highest.