ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s unemployment rate is at its lowest level since March 2001.

The state Department of Employment and Economic Development reported Thursday that November’s seasonally adjusted rate was 3.5 percent.

Employers added 7,200 jobs last month and there was a revision showing another small gain instead of a loss for October. Nine of the industrial sectors the agency tracks gained jobs in November, with only manufacturing and miscellaneous services losing ground.

Minnesota’s jobless rate remains better than the national average. The U.S. rate for November was 5 percent. But the state’s employment growth rate has been slower than the national average.

State officials have begun focusing on a newer worry: a tightening labor market fed by a mismatch between openings and qualified workers available.

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