Minnesota’s unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of one percentage point in March to 3.8 percent while the labor force participation rate remained steady at 69.5 percent. The share of the working age population that is employed also rose two-tenths to 66.9 percent, its highest reading since March 2009.
The national unemployment rate also dropped two-tenths of one percentage point to 4.5 percent in March.
Annual job gains in Minnesota totaled 48,162 in March, over the year, for an annual growth rate of 1.7 percent. Minnesota’s private sector added 45,116 jobs over the year, up 1.9 percent.
U.S. job growth stood at 1.5 percent and 1.7 percent for the private sector over the year in March. This is the first time Minnesota’s growth rates have topped the corresponding national rates since July 2014.
All sectors grew over the year with the exception of Leisure & Hospitality, down 1,387 jobs or 0.6 percent. Construction continues to exhibit the strongest growth over the year at 5.6 percent, while Education & Health Services is up by the largest number of jobs, at 17,413.
Eight Minnesota industry sectors lead their national counterparts in growth over the year. The only sectors lagging the nation are Manufacturing, Professional & Business Services, and Leisure & Hospitality.
Minnesota gained 5,300 jobs over the month in March on a seasonally adjusted basis, up 0.2 percent, all in the private sector, while Government was flat over the month.
Six of the 11 major sectors experienced job gains, while four shed jobs and Government held steady.
Professional & Business Services led the gains with a 4,900 job surge, followed by a strong 2,500 job jump in Leisure & Hospitality. Smaller gains were registered in Financial Activities, Manufacturing, Information and Logging & Mining.
Over the month losses occurred in Trade, Transportation & Utilities, Education & Health Services, Construction and Other Services.
U.S. employment overall and in the private sector grew by 0.1 percent over the month in March.