Wells Fargo economist forsees slow job growth in 2012

With two straight months of job decline in Minnesota, economist Scott Anderson isn't optimistic. Job losses in formerly strong sectors like transportation and manufacturing are his chief concerns.
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With two straight months of job decline in Minnesota, economist Scott Anderson isn't optimistic. Job losses in formerly strong sectors like transportation and manufacturing are his chief concerns.

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Despite the decline, Minnesota's unemployment dropped 0.2 percent to 5.6 percent last month. State officials say most of the job losses were in retail, construction, hospitality and government sectors. Minnesota remains well below the national unemployment rate of 8.1 percent.

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The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development says the state's jobless rate fell a tenth of a percent to 5.8 percent last month after employers add 5,900 jobs, the Star Tribune reports. Education and health services led all sectors in September with 5,600 new positions. The government, manufacturing and information sectors shed the most jobs last month.

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The brokerage arm of San Francisco-based Wells Fargo & Co. is moving an unknown number of jobs from Minneapolis to St. Louis. The Business Journal reports Wells Fargo Advisors is making room for an additional 400 workers at its Missouri headquarters. A company spokeswoman wouldn't disclose how many jobs are being cut in Minnesota.

Jobless rate ticks up as Minnesota employers shed 200 positions

But "the underlying fundamentals of the economy remain strong," said the chief of the state's employment department. The trade, transportation and utility industries were the biggest job gainers in March, while government, manufacturing and construction led the losses.

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