- Associated Press - Friday, July 22, 2016

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska’s unemployment rate remained 3 percent in June, the same rate it’s been for more than a year, according to a state report issued Friday.

The Nebraska Labor Department said the preliminary June rate remained well below the preliminary national unemployment rate of 4.9 percent in June - two-tenths of a point above the revised May rate of 4.7 percent.

The U.S. Labor Department said only South Dakota’s preliminary rate of 2.7 percent and New Hampshire’s 2.8 percent were lower in June than Nebraska.

Nonfarm employment grew by 1,773 over the month and by 12,753 over the year. Private industries with the most growth year over year were leisure and hospitality, up 5,727; education and health services, up 4,846; and professional and business services, up 1,008.

The preliminary Omaha area rate rose a half-point to hit 3.5 percent in June, compared with 3 percent in May and 3.5 percent a year ago. The Lincoln rate jumped six-tenths of point to hit 3.1 percent in June, compared with 2.5 percent in May and 2.9 percent a year ago. The Grand Island area rate reached 3.4 percent in June, compared with 3 percent in May; a year ago, the figure was 3.5 percent.

The unemployment rates for Grand Island, Lincoln and Omaha have not been seasonally adjusted, so they cannot be directly compared with the state unemployment rate.

Here are preliminary area labor market unemployment rates for May, followed by revised figures for April:

- Beatrice: 3.4, 2.9

- Columbus: 3.8, 3.5

- Fremont: 3.5, 2.8

- Hastings: 3.4, 2.8

- Kearney: 2.9, 2.3

- Lexington: 3.0, 2.7

- Norfolk: 3.0, 2.5

- North Platte: 3.4, 2.9

- Red Willow: 3.5, 2.7

- Scottsbluff: 3.6, 3.4

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