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Jobless figures down slightly in Lehigh Valley

By Randy Kraft, WFMZ.com Reporter, RKraft@wfmz.com
Published On: Apr 30 2013 12:14:32 PM CDT

Unemployment in the Lehigh Valley decreased slightly in March, according to the state Department of Labor & Industry.

The seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 8.3 percent in the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton Metropolitan Statistical Area, a decrease of three-tenths of a percentage point.

Seasonally adjusted non-farm jobs in the A-B-E area increased by 700 in March, up to 350,700.

The state defines the A-B-E Metropolitan Statistical Area as Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties as well as Warren County, N.J.

Unemployment rates across the state ranged from 5.9 percent in State College to 9.6 percent in Scranton-Wilkes-Barre.

Pennsylvania's statewide unemployment rate decreased to 7.9 percent in March, down two-tenths of a point. The national unemployment rate in March was 7.6 percent, down one-tenth.

The state reported that record high levels were reached in several areas in March, including professional and technical services, educational services and healthcare and social assistance.

Labor & Industry reported mining, logging and construction, and leisure and hospitality also performed well in March due to seasonal employment gains.