Minnesota's economy reached a landmark with the announcement Thursday that the state has now recovered more than 150,000 jobs since the recession started – the number of jobs lost during that economic downturn that began in 2008.
Minnesota added 12,200 jobs in August, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development announced on Thursday, putting the state over the 150,000 milestone.
The agency had more good news: Minnesota has added 63,100 jobs in the past year, a 2.3 percent growth rate that exceeds the national rate of 1.7 percent.
Some perspective: Minnesota has a bigger population and labor force than it did in February 2008, the Associated Press notes. Another key number to consider: 153,000 people are still officially unemployed in the state.
"We're still not back at the point where we can say the economy is fully recovered," Steve Hine, the research director at the Department of Employment and Economic Development's Labor Information Office, told the AP.
Minnesota's jobless rate dipped a scant 0.1 percent in August to a seasonally adjusted 5.1 percent, the lowest it has been since April 2008. That compares to a U.S. unemployment rate of 7.3 percent in August. The nation added 169,000 jobs in August.
The state lists job sectors with growth data for each, noting that trade, transportation and utilities led all sectors in the past year, adding 18,300 jobs. One sector lost jobs in the last year: (down 5,100).
Some other over-the-year gains, by sector:
Education and health services (up 13,100)
Professional and business services (up 10,200)
Leisure and hospitality (up 9,400)
Government (up 9,000)
Construction (up 2,700)
Financial activities (up 1,900)
Logging and mining (up 400)
Even as the economy shows signs of improvement and poverty levels off,
New U.S. census data suggest that nationwide, economic gains are uneven, despite improvement in some segments of the economy and the leveling off of poverty, the Associated Press reports.
Some segments of the population are not seeing an economic turnaround, such as single-mother families, whose poverty rate is increasing, the AP reports.