Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held at 2.8 percent in December, according to data recently released by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), marking the fourth straight month with the same unemployment rate.

Minnesota’s unemployment rate remains the lowest since May 1999 and is just above the all-time low of 2.5 percent held in January and February 1999.

The state gained 500 jobs in December on a seasonally adjusted basis. November’s previously announced loss of 800 jobs was revised downward to 1,000 jobs lost.

Over the year, Minnesota has added 31,441 jobs for a 1.1 percent increase over last December. Private sector gains stand at 28,960 or a 1.2 percent increase. Nationally, the total non-farm and private sector growth rates were 1.8 percent and 2 percent respectively. 

Seven of the 11 major sectors gained jobs in December, while four lost jobs. Leisure and hospitality once again led the gains with 2,100 more jobs.

Other sectors with gains were, construction up (1,100), manufacturing (up 500), other services (up 500), information (up 300), trade, transportation and utilities (up 200), and logging and mining (up 100).

Sectors measuring loses were; professional and business services (down 2,600), financial activities (down 900), education and health care services (down 700) and government (down 100).

The Mankato Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) once again had the highest over-the-year unadjusted growth in employment at 4.0 percent. Following the Mankato MSA was the Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA with 1.6 percent growth, Duluth-Superior MSA with 1.1 percent growth and St. Cloud MSA with 0.9 percent growth.

Rochester MSA declined 0.2 percent since last December.

DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development.

For more details about the agency and its services, visit the DEED Web site online at www.mn.gov/deed.