By Associated Press - Friday, July 21, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - New Mexico labor officials are touting the largest gain in private-sector job growth in over a decade.

Figures released Friday by the Department of Workforce Solutions show a 3 percent increase in the private sector, representing 18,900 jobs.

Much of the growth was fueled by a boost in private service-providing industries, particularly the leisure and hospitality sectors. State officials say the increase of 4,300 jobs in those sectors from May to June was unusual.

Overall, 11 industries have added jobs since December 2014.

Officials say the uptick has put New Mexico at No. 7 in the nation when it comes to private-sector growth.

As for unemployment, the seasonally adjusted rate for June decreased to 6.4 percent.

The state has struggled with high unemployment numbers, only recently ending its stretch at the top of the nation’s jobless rankings.

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