North Carolina’s unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.5 percent in March, as the state’s labor force continued to grow.
The rate has fallen three-tenths of a percentage point over the past 12 months, and remains above the national rate of 5 percent.
While the state has been adding jobs at an annual growth rate of about 2.5 percent, the number of people in the labor force has also been growing.
The state added 12,500 nonfarm jobs in March, and has now added 104,300 over the past 12 months.
Meanwhile, the labor force, which includes job seekers and employed workers, grew by 34,153 last month and has grown at a 2.6 percent annual rate over the past year.
The sectors that added the most jobs in March were trade, transportation and utilities, which added 6,600, and profession and business services, which added 3,900. Education and health services also added 1,100 jobs.
The largest job losses were reported in government, which lost 1,500, and construction and information, which each lost 800.
The employment data was issued Friday by the N.C. Department of Commerce.