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J Pat Carter, Associated Press
In this Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2013, photo, job seekers meet with employers at a job fair in Sunrise, Fla. The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits jumped by 16,000 for the week of ending March 23, 2013, the second straight weekly increase. But the longer-term trend in layoffs remained consistent with an improved job market. Applications increased to a seasonally adjusted 357,000 for the week ending March 23, the Labor Department said Thursday. That's up from 341,000 the previous week, which was revised slightly higher.

SALT LAKE CITY — The state's workforce continues to expand.

The Utah Department of Workforce Services reported Friday that Utah’s nonfarm payroll employment for April 2013 grew by an estimated 3.5 percent, adding 43,100 more jobs to the economy compared to April of 2012.

The state’s current employment level is 1,286,500.

The April seasonally adjusted unemployment rate measured 4.7 percent, having fallen 0.2 percent from March. Approximately 64,400 individuals were unemployed and actively seeking work. The national unemployment rate dropped slightly to 7.5 percent in the same month.

Job growth rates in Utah remain above the state’s long-run average in April, DWS chief economist Carrie Mayne said.

"The labor market continues to grow and show signs of stable expansion as both the number of employed and the overall labor force size increase," she said. "The labor force participation rate, which measures the share of non-institutionalized civilian population who are employed or actively seeking work, registered an increase of roughly three tenths of a percentage point in April."

The number of employed individuals has increased by approximately 11,900, she added.

According to the report, of the 11 industry groups observed, nine posted year-over-year employment gains — with the largest gains in trade, transportation and utilities at 11,000 new jobs. Professional and business services added 8,100 new positions, with leisure and hospitality adding 7,000 jobs. The government sector lost approximately 3,100 jobs in that same time frame.

The April jobs numbers are a positive indicator for the state's economic fortunes, analysts said.

“The unemployment rate last month was a full percentage point lower than it was in April 2012, illustrating Utah’s continued economic growth,” said Juliette Tennert, chief economist at the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget.

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