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Nebaska unemployment rate slightly higher than last year in January
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Nebaska unemployment rate slightly higher than last year in January

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Nebraska's unemployment rate in January remained higher than a year ago.

According to information released Monday by the Nebraska Department of Labor, the state unemployment rate was 3.2% in January, down from a revised 3.4% in December but up from 2.9% in January 2020.

After skyrocketing last spring due to the coronavirus pandemic, unemployment rates in the state have dropped over recent months to near-normal levels.

“Nebraska employment continues to trend toward prepandemic levels,” Commissioner of Labor John H. Albin said in a news release.

Nonfarm employment for January was 982,350, down 20,794 compared with December, which is largely due to typical seasonal fluctuations, Albin said.

The national seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for January was 6.3%, down from the December 2020 rate of 6.7% but higher than the January 2020 rate of 3.5%.

The state Labor Department provided January rates for the state's metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas but said it could not yet provide December's revised rate for comparison because of benchmarking, the annual process of aligning estimated data from one employment statistics program with known employment numbers from a quarterly employment census. The benchmarking is necessary to ensure the quality of the data, the department said.

Lincoln's unemployment rate in January was 3.3%.

Reach the writer at 402-473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LincolnBizBuzz.

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Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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