New Hampshire's unemployment rate dropped slightly in December to 5.1 percent, which the governor says is the fourth lowest unemployment rate in the nation.
The national unemployment rate in December was 8.5 percent.
Gov. John Lynch said Wednesday that the decline in the state unemployment rate is evidence that New Hampshire's economic strategies are working. He says New Hampshire's rate is 40 percent below the national average.
Lynch said that while the increase in people returning to work is good news, there are 38,000 Granite State residents still looking for work.
The New Hampshire unemployment rate two years ago _ in December 2010 _ was 5.6 percent. It peaked at 6.7 percent in September 2009.