- Associated Press - Friday, April 21, 2017

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - Alaska’s unemployment rate held at 6.4 percent last month, the same as February.

The preliminary, seasonally adjusted number for March is down compared to a year ago, when it stood at 6.6 percent.

The state labor department says preliminary estimates indicate there were 7,100 fewer jobs in March when compared to March 2016.

The department, in a release, cited continued losses in several sectors, including the oil and construction industries and state government.

It also noted that job losses don’t necessarily lead to higher unemployment rates. To be considered unemployed, the department says a person must remain in Alaska and actively be seeking work.

Nationally, the unemployment rate last month stood at 4.5 percent.

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