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Minnesota unemployment ticks up slightly to 4.8 percent


Minnesota's unemployment rate climbed from a seasonally adjusted 4.7 percent to 4.8 percent in February, state Department of Employment and Economic Development officials announced.

In all, employers in the state shed just 100 jobs last month, but the jobless rate ticked up one-tenth after revisions in January figures.

The state unemployment rate was still below the U.S. rate of 6.7 percent, which has trended downward from an October 2009 peak of 10.0 percent.

Minnesota has the nation's ninth-lowest unemployment rate among states in January, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben offered a sunny assessment: “While job growth slowed last month, most Minnesota employment sectors are well ahead of where they were a year ago. Manufacturing added jobs for the fifth month in a row, and construction is growing at more than three times the national pace.”

Job gains in Minnesota last month were seen in these sectors:

Education and health services (up 1,300)
Professional and business services (up 1,300)
Leisure and hospitality (up 900)
Manufacturing (up 300)
Construction (up 300)
Mining and logging (up 100)

Job losses:

Information (down 1,000)
Government (down 1,000)
Trade, transportation and utilities (down 1,000)
Financial activities (down 800)

Job growth in the last year has been seen in these Minnesota cities:

Minneapolis-St. Paul – 1.2 percent

Duluth-Superior – 0.8 percent

Rochester – 0.4 percent

St. Cloud – 2.3 percent

Mankato – 2.4

Over the past year, the state has added 44,714 jobs, a growth rate of 1.6 percent compared with a U.S. growth rate of 1.5 percent during that period, DEED officials say.

Minnesota has nearly 3 million workers in its labor force, the Associated Press notes.

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