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The unemployment rate in Georgia was unchanged at 6.3 percent last month, matching its lowest level since July 2008. The rate was 7.3 percent a year ago.

"While the rate held steady in March, we have seen considerable improvement since it began a steady decline from November 2010, when it was 10.5 percent," Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said in a statement today.  "In fact, the jobless rate has either declined or remained steady every month since then."

The Georgia Department of Labor said today that the number of seasonally-adjusted jobs declined by 6,600, or 0.2 percent, to 4,239,500 in March, down from 4,246,100 in February. Most of the job losses came in accommodations and food services, 4,000; construction, 3,500; and nondurable manufacturing, including textiles, 2,300. Those losses were offset somewhat by gains in health care and social assistance, 2,600; retail trade, 2,200; and finance and insurance, 1,800.

"Despite a small job loss in March, our over-the-year numbers still look very good," Butler continued. "Our employers added 127,100 jobs, which is the strongest Marchto-March growth we've seen since 2000. That's a growth rate of 3.1 percent, which is much stronger than the 2.3 percent national growth rate."

Georgia's jobless rate in March remained eight-tenths of a percentage point above the U.S. rate of 5.5 percent.

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