By Jeff Amy/The Associated Press
JACKSON — Mississippi’s unemployment rate ticked up to 8.6 percent in December.
Despite the one-month rise, the state’s jobless rate still decreased the third-most among states in 2012, in percentage point terms. Only Nevada and Florida saw larger drops.
The state’s unemployment rate was 8.5 percent in November and 10.4 percent rate in December 2011.
The unemployment rate rose because the state’s labor force increased faster than people found jobs. Mississippi reported 115,000 unemployed people in December, up from 113,000 in November, but down from 141,000 in December 2011.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics released numbers Friday.
Analysts say Mississippi has resumed growing, though slowly, after the economy stalled in the summer.
A separate survey of employer payrolls shows nonfarm employees fell slightly from November but remained above levels from December 2011.