Puerto Rico sees slight drop in unemployment rate

AP News
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Posted: Nov 22, 2014 10:10 AM

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico's unemployment rate has dropped slightly as the U.S. territory struggles to emerge from a nearly decade-long economic slump.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says the unemployment rate was 14 percent in October, compared to 14.1 percent in September. In October of last year, the rate was 14.9 percent.

The unemployment rate for the island of nearly 3.7 million people remains far greater than last month's total U.S. rate of 5.8 percent and is higher than any state.

The bureau reports that the percentage of Puerto Ricans participating in the labor market also declined, dropping to 39.9 percent in October compared to 41.2 percent a year ago.

Officials said Friday the island saw job growth in five of eight sectors over last year, including manufacturing and construction.