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Utah jobless rate at 3.5 percent

Utah jobless rate at 3.5 percent

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SALT LAKE CITY — The Beehive State continues to be among the best places in the nation to find gainful employment.

The Utah Department of Workforce Services reported Friday that the state’s nonfarm payroll employment in December grew by an estimated 3.9 percent over the same month the previous year, adding 50,700 jobs to the economy. Utah’s current employment level registers 1,366,700.

The unemployment rate dropped only slightly from last month, registering 3.5 percent. The report indicated that approximately 49,900 Utahns were unemployed and actively seeking work.

Utah's unemployment rate is lower than the national unemployment rate of 5.6 percent.

“Utah’s economy is firing on all cylinders, and it’s great to see all sectors of our economy growing and adding jobs,” Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said in a prepared statement. “As we head into the legislative session, we must continue to make the decisions that will enhance the long term strength of our state economy and improve the quality of life for all Utahns.”

Utah's economy is firing on all cylinders, and it's great to see all sectors of our economy growing and adding jobs.

–Utah Gov. Gary Herbert

In Utah, all of the 10 private sector industry groups measured in the report survey showed net job increases in December compared to the previous year, with the largest increases coming in trade, transportation and utilities, which added 11,600 new jobs. The construction industry added 10,000 jobs for the month, while leisure and hospitality services added new 6,200 positions.

The fastest job growth occurred in construction, natural resources and leisure and hospitality services, the report states.

“Utah ended the year on a labor market high note, posting the highest year-over job growth for all of 2014,” reported Carrie Mayne, chief economist at the Department of Workforce Services. “For the first time since the Great Recession, the number of unemployed Utahns dropped below the 50,000 level.”

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Jasen Lee


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