WASHINGTON – Employers boosted hiring in 13 U.S. states in January while employment changed little in 36 states.
The Labor Department says Alaska is the only state to show a significant decline in jobs, shedding 2,100.
Nationwide, hiring picked up in January as employers added 238,000 jobs, a clear improvement over last year's average gains. A broad rebound in the global economy and greater optimism among U.S. businesses have spurred more hiring.
New Hampshire reported the largest jobs gain on a percentage basis, with a 1 percent increase, followed by Idaho and Maine with 0.7 percent each.
Unemployment rates fell in 5 states and were mostly stable in the other 45. The rates in Arkansas and Oregon fell to the lowest on records dating back to 1976.