Wyoming posts nation's lowest unemployment rate

Cheyenne, Wyo. – Wyoming posted the country's lowest unemployment rate in December at 3.4 percent - less than half the nationwide average of 7.2 percent.

The U.S. Department of Labor reported Tuesday that Wyoming was followed closely by North Dakota at 3.5 percent and South Dakota at 3.9 percent.

December jobless rates were highest in Michigan at 10.6 percent and Rhode Island at 10 percent.

Wyoming's December unemployment rate was up slightly from 3.2 percent in November. December's rate increased .3 percent from 3.1 percent in December 2007.

Senior economist Wenlin Liu of the state Economic Analysis Division says Wyoming had job growth of 2.2 percent from December 2007 to December 2008.

He says that was driven by job growth of 7 percent in the mining sector and 3 percent in the government sector over 2008.