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.

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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.

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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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