St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) - The latest statistics show Minnesota’s seasonally adjusted jobless rate slid a tenth of a point last month and the 3.1-percent rate is the lowest for the state since July 2000.  A year ago, the unemployment rate was 4-percent.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development says the state saw a net gain of about 8900 jobs in December, which brought the job gain total for the past year to over 44,000 for a job growth rate of 1.5-percent, matching the national average.

The biggest job gains last month were in the construction sector, which added 5700 positions, while the professional and business services sector saw the largest decline at around 1400 jobs.

The year-over-year statistics show the Twin Cities metropolitan area had the strongest job growth rate in Minnesota at 2.4-percent, followed by Duluth at 2.1-percent. Rochester had the weakest growth rate of the major cities in Minnesota at a tenth of a percent.