Missouri unemployment rate holds steady in May as labor force declines

Missouri’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady from April to May at 4.3 percent, according to data released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That puts the jobless rate in Missouri below the national rate of 4.7, reported by the BLS earlier this month.

Missouri’s unemployment rate has hovered between 4.2 and 4.4 percent since November 2015, declining from 5.1 percent in May 2015. The total number of people in the civilian labor force increased by 53,831 in that 12-month period, and the number of unemployed people fell by 22,621.

From April to May, the civilian workforce decreased by 5,642 people, and the number of unemployed people dropped by 884.

Data on nonfarm payrolls by sector revealed that three sectors saw increases in the number of people employed. Financial activities added 1,000 jobs; manufacturing as well as education and health services both added 200 jobs.

The industry with the sharpest decline was construction with 2,700 less workers in May than in April. Leisure and hospitality showed a decline of 1,900 workers, and professional and business services fell by 700 employees.

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