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Big Boost for Missouri Job Market in April

Missouri's labor market conditions improved significantly in April, as total nonfarm payroll employment in the state increased by 14,800 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to data by the Missouri Department of Economic Development .

There were 2,500 more manufacturing jobs in play for the month.

Missouri's unemployment rate fell to 9.4 percent, down by a tenth of a point from the March figure.

The April employment gain comes after the March gain of 9,000, which was revised upward from the preliminary figure of 7,200, and represents the third consecutive month of positive job growth in the state.

On a not-seasonally-adjusted basis, Missouri's unemployment rate fell sharply in April, dropping to 8.8 percent from 10.2 in March. In comparison, the U.S. rates for April were 9.9 percent seasonally-adjusted and 9.5 percent not-seasonally-adjusted.

April is traditionally a month of seasonal improvement, as construction, tourism and other weather-sensitive industries begin to increase following the winter months. This year, most private-sector industry groups showed employment gains beyond the expected seasonal amount.

Big gainers included leisure and hospitality (up 6,400); administrative and support services (+4,300, including gains in temporary help and other employment agencies); manufacturing (+2,500); wholesale trade (+1,300); and other services (+1,100).

Government employment was down by 1,400 jobs over the month, mainly due to a decrease in the number of temporary census workers.

Most metropolitan areas experienced employment growth in April. In general, the industries responsible for the growth in these areas were the same industries as the ones contributing to the statewide growth, including administrative and support services and leisure and hospitality. St. Louis (+5,500) and Kansas City (+5,200) had the biggest gains for the month among the state's major metros areas.

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