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NM third in percentage of government jobs

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — New Mexico had the third-highest concentration of government employees in the nation in 2016, according to the financial website 24/7 Wall St.

The state ranked behind only Wyoming and Alaska and just ahead of Oklahoma and Mississippi, according to the new report.

According to the report, which was based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 23 percent of New Mexico’s jobs were in government. The report looked at the number of government positions as a share of the total number of jobs.

States with high government employment tend to have low population density, according to the report.  Alaska, for example, has the lowest population density in the country with only 1.2 people per square mile. Wyoming and Alaska both have relatively small workforces in general.

In 2016, 15.4 percent of jobs in the U.S.  involved working for federal, state, or local governments, according to 24/7 Wall St. Most government employees — 64.5 percent — actually work at the local level.

Among the 10 states with the greatest shares of those working in government, the percentages have increased in every state except for New Mexico. The opposite trend can be seen among the 10 states with the lowest share of government workers. In 8 of the 10 states, government employment as a share of total jobs has declined.