Minn. Unemployment Dips To 6.5 Percent In April

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s unemployment rate edged down a tenth of a percentage point to a seasonally adjusted 6.5 percent in April, though the state lost 5,200 jobs — a decline officials said was largely because of poor weather.

The state figure is still well below April’s national rate of 9 percent, which was up from 8.8 percent a month earlier.

The figures Thursday from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development showed that the state’s job losses in April were mostly due to difficulty in the construction sector. That was offset some by the state revising upward the number of jobs gained a month earlier.

Steve Hine, DEED Labor Market Information Office research director, said April’s lousy weather fizzled out the seasonal hiring increases that are typically seen across the state.

“I really do believe that a lot of this weakness here was related to the weather,” Hine said.

Commissioner Mark Phillips drew a parallel between April’s job losses and the drop in fishing license purchased by the season opener.

“People didn’t open their cabins in April like usual,” Phillips said.

The lag in construction contributed to weakness in the specialty trade sector, areas like pluming, carpentry and subcontracting. That’s because those sectors typically rely on new construction before they can work, Hine said.

Leisure and hospitality led all sectors in April, gaining 3,100 jobs. Within that figure, bars, restaurants and lodging showed significant increases, Hine said. Recreation, however, showed a loss. In early April, only two-thirds of the golf courses in Minnesota were open, Hine said.

Professional business services gained 2,600 jobs in April. That sector led the others over the past year, gaining 8,300 jobs in total.

The numbers illustrate how vulnerable Minnesota jobs are to seasonal variation, Hine said.

“I look forward to seeing what May’s numbers produce before I conclude there’s either underlying weakness,” he said, “or whether it really, truly was a weather-related blip.”

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Tdog

    But this does not account for the people who still do not have a job because their unemployment ran out. I am a dislocated worker and going to school for law enforcement, half way through school my unemployment ran out, even though they told me I could still get it while going to school and all of my extentions have run out. I DO NOT BELIEVE THOSE NUMBERS AT ALL ! There a alot of people I talk to at school and they are in the same boat.

    • Chuck

      But you are going to school… and not working full-time at the moment…

      So it is proper that you are not included as unemployed, because you cannot have it both ways…

  • Swamp Fox

    Yes, the unemployment figures will drop when people fall out out of the system. In fact, if unemployment numbers in this state are dropping then where are the jobs??? I would like to go back to work!

  • wondering

    well..UHG has 864 openings

    • Swamp Fox


      • Slim

        United Health Group… picked up a newspaper lately???

        Can’t be looking very hard to have missed that story…

        • Swamp Fox

          UHG is out of my transportation range. Not the job field[s] I am interested in or can do. Thanks anyway for your comments.

          • Andrew

            @Swamp, a job is a job. Some of us work 2.

            • Swamp Fox

              A job is a job–true! But when transportation expenses and gas besides other factors make the wages disappear before you can be sufficient or contribute with food, clothing, shelter, and family support then is the job worth it. If I could walk to the job I would for health, physical, and mental health reasons but there has to be something available that I can have some expectations doing well.

              • jimmy

                If you wait long enough I’m sure someone will bring one to your couch. Maybe you would like dem dar CEO jobs.

  • TB


    • Charlie

      Please get your facts straight, MR CAPS!!!

      If your benefits ran out and you are still looking, you are considered unemployed and will be counted as such… so stop clouding the issue.

      Just because you feel it should be a certain way doesn’t mean it is wrong!

  • Chris

    If you are still looking for employment, you are included in the numbers…
    You will only drop out of the statistics if you gave up and are no longer looking.

    Sounds like a lot of crying going on here… why play the victim’s role???

    6.5% is a decent rate, even if it is skewed a little bit… so get off the couch!

    • Swamp Fox

      You are full beans about if you are looking for work, you are still in the numbers. I am looking for work and don’t receive UI or any benefits. I am one step from being homeless. If the numbers are dropping where are the jobs????

      • MARK

        Just because you don’t have a job doesn’t mean there aren’t jobs. The government isn’t going to show up at your door with an awesome job offer, you have to go find it yourself.

        • K.

          Everytime I go to Home Depot, Menards, McDonald’s, grocery stores, I see signs that say “Help Wanted”; so there are jobs out there. Many people feel that they are above these jobs, I guess. My husband was out of work a few years back and he took a job loading and unloading trucks at Sears even though he was an electrician by trade. He said it may not have been what he has always done, but at least it was a job and it was better than nothing. Then, when he did find a job in his field, it looked good on his application that he remained employed at something.

          The jobs are out there, folks. Maybe you shouldn’t be so selective.

          • Slim

            K, Thanks for sharing and hats off to your husband, as we do look at the fact taht he was motivated during that time, when we are hiring staff. Good luck to both of you, as you seserve it!

        • Swamp Fox

          I’m not asking bureaucrats or government for any damn thing! I am looking but my age and very competitive job fields aren’t making it easy. So if you are working and making a decent living wage to support yourself or your family then be grateful. I would trade places with you in a New York second!

          So stop your pontificating and be thankful your are working or surving this national economic mess.

      • Chuck

        Swamper, You ARE still in the statistics as unemployed!!!

        Does not matter if you are no longer receiving UC… just that you are looking!

        And how would you know if you are excluded or not, you can’t know for certain.

        And the jobs are coming, just maybe not witin a block of your house…

      • Charlie

        Yeah, we see your priorities…

        One step from being homeless and still not open to take a damn job if available…

        What give you the right to be so picky and cry to us about it???

        It is that entitlement mindset that is ruining this state… and that includes YOU!

  • Jay

    The governing bodies don’t think “You can handle the truth.” You meaning the public. What I really don’t like is lying, and spins on truth. Like the article states, “That was offset some by the state revising upward the number of jobs gained a month earlier.” They got us comin, and a goin, hey?! They might even believe they’re gettin over on us.
    Long as we’re at it, let’s dispell another myth. That the rich actually care about the lower classes, and that they deliberately spend money to help the economy; and that they really do deserve all the tax benefits the republicans can muster up for them.

  • scott

    wait until the state shuts down and “lays off” its employees – the unemplyment figure will sure go up then: oh yeah I forgot building a giant man cave and who should get married overrides all else

  • Just a jerk on his lunch break

    Breaking news! the enemployment rate just went back up another tenth of a percentage, apparently they forgot to account for all of the people just sitting around posting comments about news articles all day long.

    • Cindy

      And what might you be doing?

  • Just a jerk on his lunch break

    I’m eating a sandwich. My schedule is pretty booked up Cindy. Hollar at me next week sweetheart ;)

  • budo

    I would admit believing in the tooth fairy, moon men, and our economy is improving before I would believe this make-believe story of news.

    I remember being taught in a statistics class at the U…..”68.231 of all statistices are worthless”.

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