New Mexico’s job situation continued to improve in July as its unemployment rate ticked down to 4.7 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
That is down from 6.1 percent last July, a 1.4 percentage point drop that was the largest in the nation, the bureau reported. The state’s rate was 4.9 percent in June.
Unemployment in New Mexico has been slowly falling since December after years of being mired in the aftermath of the Great Recession.
The improvement in July helped the state climb a little further out of the cellar when compared to the nation as a whole. Four states — Alaska (6.9 percent), West Virginia (5.4 percent), Louisiana (4.9 percent), Mississippi (4.8 percent) and the District of Columbia (5.6 percent) all had higher unemployment rates.
The national unemployment rate was 3.9 percent in July, down from 4 percent in June. The rate fell in 11 states, was up in two and stable in the remainder.
According to the state Department of Workforce Solutions, nonagricultural employment grew by 17,900 jobs, or 2.2 percent, between July 2017 and July 2018. Leisure and hospitality added the most jobs with 6,500 , a 6.6 percent increase. Construction was up by 4,200 jobs, a 9.1 percent increase.