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Iowa job market continued gradual improvem

Published: Monday, May 21, 2012 11:34 a.m. CDT

DES MOINES (MCT) — Iowa’s unemployment rate edged ever-so-slightly downward for the fourth-consecutive month in April.

The state unemployment rate edged down another 0.1 percentage points to 5.1 percent from March’s 5.2 percent, continuing a series of four consecutive declines of 0.1 percentage point.

The number of unemployed Iowans declined by 1,600 from March levels, to 85,200 and is now 13,300 lower than in April 2011.

The number of working Iowans rose 2,500 from March levels, to 1,578,200.

The construction sector added 2,700 jobs in April, reaching a total of 69,200, its highest level since December 2008.

Professional and business services added 1,500 jobs, continuing its rebound, and government added 1,100 jobs.

Manufacturing, which has been a constant in the recovery, added another 1,000 jobs in durable goods factories. It has led all sectors in growth over the past year, gaining 12,500 jobs (see page 5A for story).

Iowa Workforce Development Director Teresa Wahlert said the results are evidence of further progress in the state’s recovery in her monthly prepared remarks.

“Job growth in the state’s construction industry has been particularly strong in 2012, signaling a turnaround in an industry that was adversely affected by the housing downturn,” Wahlert added.

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(c)2012 The Gazette (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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