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Unemployment rate dips in Springfield metro area

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The Springfield metropolitan statistical area's unemployment rate decreased in February after an increase to start the year, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

The five-county Springfield MSA comprising Greene, Christian, Webster, Polk and Dallas counties posted a jobless rate of 3.9% in February, according to a news release. That's down from 4.2% in January and flat from December, according to past reporting.

The Springfield metro joined five other MSAs in Missouri in reporting decreases in February unemployment rates.

The MSAs, ranked by their February unemployment rates, are:
• Columbia, 3.3%, down from 3.8% in January;
• Jefferson City, 3.9%, up from 3.8%;
• Springfield, 3.9%, down from 4.2%;
• Cape Girardeau, 4.2%, down from 4.6%;
• Joplin, 4.2%, down from 4.6%;
• St. Joseph, 4.3%, flat;
• Kansas City, 4.9%, down from 5.1%; and
• St. Louis, 5.1%, down from 5.5%.

Missouri's February unemployment rate of 5% was down from 5.1% in January, according to the release.

Nationally, compared with the same month a year earlier, February unemployment rates were higher in 383 of the 389 metro areas measured by the BLS, lower in four and unchanged in two.

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