ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s unemployment rate dropped slightly in March over the previous month, but state officials say that’s largely because more people stopped looking for work.
The Department of Employment and Economic Development says Thursday that the unemployment rate in March was 5.4 percent, compared to 5.5 percent in February. But the state lost 5,200 jobs in the same period, after adding 9,900 jobs a month earlier.READ MORE: Indigenous Bowl Brings 30+ Tribes, Communities Together At U.S. Bank Stadium
The agency points to a drop in labor force participation to explain it. That number is now 71 percent.READ MORE: Minnesota Weather: Monday Will Be Season's Coldest, With Flash Freeze Causing Icy Commutes
Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben says Minnesota’s experience is consistent with slower job growth nationally. She also says it’s due in part to poor weather conditions that have slowed spring hiring.
Minnesota’s rate remains below the U.S. unemployment rate of 7.6 percent in March.MORE NEWS: Firefighters Hurt By Falling Porch During Minneapolis House Fire
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