By Associated Press - Friday, December 16, 2016

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - State officials say Idaho’s unemployment rate has remained at 3.8 percent for the past five months.

The Idaho Department of Labor announced Friday that growth in manufacturing, trade and transportation and financial activities helped offset jobs lost in construction, education and health and hospitality.

The state’s labor force participation rate continued to remain at 64 percent. The national rate is 62.7 percent.

State officials say the number of unemployed Idaho residents is around 30,600 - dropping 300 over the past month.

Twenty-three of the state’s 44 counties have unemployment rates higher than the state rate. Clearwater, Shoshone, Benewah, Adams and Lemhi counties once again all have unemployment rates higher than 6 percent.

Idaho’s unemployment benefit payouts are up 3.9 percent compared to the same time last year, from $1.8 million in 2015 to $1.9 million.

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