- Associated Press - Friday, July 22, 2016

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Mississippi employers cut workers from payrolls for the third straight month in June, although the jobless rate held steady as people stopped seeking work.

Used by many economists as a top indicator, payrolls fell almost 5,000 in May. Payrolls remain about 6,000 above June 2015 levels, but year-over-year increases are narrowing.

A separate survey shows Mississippi’s unemployment rate held steady from May to June at 5.9 percent. That’s down from 6.4 percent in June 2015. The number of people reporting jobs fell. Total unemployment was level at 75,000, as people left the workforce.

Mississippi had June’s eighth-highest jobless rate among states, with Alaska worst at 6.7 percent. The nationwide jobless rate was 4.9 percent.

The U.S. Labor Department Friday released both sets of figures, adjusted to cancel out seasonal changes.

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