Indiana’s unemployment rate slipped to 3.2 percent in February, down from 3.3 percent the previous month, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development announced Friday.
Private sector employment grew by 5,200 over the month and is up 28,200 over the past year, the state said.
Indiana’s labor force—which is composed of both employed and unemployed-but-willing-to-work residents—increased by 2,495 workers from January to February, to 3.31 million. The increase was a result of 2,243 unemployed residents no longer seeking employment and a 4,738 decrease in residents employed.
Indiana’s labor-force participation rate—the percentage of the state’s population that is either employed or actively seeking work—stood at 63.7 percent in February. It remains well ahead of the national rate of 63 percent.
January job gains were seen in the Construction (2,800) and the Trade, Transportation and Utilities (1,900) sectors. Job losses were primarily seen in the Leisure and Hospitality category (-1,500) and Private Educational and Health Services (-900) sector.
Indiana’s unemployment rate in January was lower than the national rate of 4.1 percent. The state’s rate has been lower than the national rate for more than four years, except for the month of October 2014, when it was equal.
The rate in Indiana is lower than in neighboring states Michigan (4.8 percent), Illinois (4.7 percent), Ohio (4.5 percent) and Kentucky (4.1 percent).