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Private sector gains offset gov’t job losses, as state unemployment ticks down

Published 1:17pm Thursday, July 18, 2013

ST. PAUL — Minnesota’s unemployment rate continued its downward trend in June, inching a tenth of a percent lower than May.

The Department of Employment and Economic Security announced Thursday that the state’s jobless rate for June was 5.2 percent, down from 5.3 percent a month earlier. Minnesota employers added 400 jobs in June, thanks to a 2,500-job increase in the private sector. That was offset by a 2,100-job loss in government employment.

Minnesota added 54,100 jobs in the last year, for a growth rate of 2 percent. The state has now regained 95 percent of the jobs lost during the recession, from its low point in May 2008.

All of the state’s metropolitan areas saw job growth in the last 12 months. The most gains came in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, which saw a 2.9 percent spike, followed by St. Cloud at 2.2 percent, Mankato at 0.8 percent, Rochester at 0.6 percent and Duluth at 0.4 percent.

Minnesota’s economy continues to outperform the overall U.S. economy. The national unemployment rate in May was unchanged at 7.6 percent, and its growth rate over the last year was 1.7 percent.

The economic sector to see the most growth in Minnesota in June was professional and business services, which added 3,600 jobs. Other gains occurred in trade, transportation and utilities; leisure and hospitality; logging and mining; and education and health services. After government, the biggest job losses were in financial activities, construction, manufacturing and information.

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