Robert Davidson

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MS Unemployment Drops Slightly

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi’s unemployment rate ticked down to 8.5 percent in August as workers kept leaking out of the labor force.

A separate survey showed state employer payrolls fell slightly.

Both sets of figures – adjusted to cancel out normal seasonal changes – were released Friday by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

It’s the lowest state jobless rate since February 2009. Mississippi’s unemployment rate had initially been estimated at 8.5 percent in July, but that was revised up to 8.6 percent. The state jobless rate was 9.3 percent in August 2012.

The labor force fell by 4,000 people.

110,000 Mississippians were unemployed in August, down slightly from July, and also down from 124,000 in August 2012.

State nonfarm payrolls fell by 1,000 people from July, but remained 20,000 above year-ago levels.