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New jobs stats; NM economy still worst in region

It's the same old story with New Mexico's economy; it continues to be the worst performing economy in the region, and it has yet to recover all the jobs it lost during the recession.

The state added 9,000 jobs in the year that ended Jan. 31, for a 0.9 percent growth rate, according to figures released Monday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But every state in the region had better performing economies than did New Mexico.

Utah had a 3.1 percent jobs growth rate, in Nevada it was 2.8 percent, and in Colorado it was 2.6 percent.

And while New Mexico's unemployment rage fell by 0.6 percent over the year to 5.9 percent, it was the second-worst jobless rate among the states.

The good news for New Mexico is that all the job growth was in the private sector, and the manufacturing sector, which has been losing jobs for more than a decade, actually added 800 jobs for a 2.3 percent growth rate. The mining sector, which is mostly oil and gas, added 700 jobs for a 6.7 percent growth rate.

Despite the jobs gains, New Mexico still hasn't recovered all the jobs it lost during the recession. Jobs in the state peaked at 849,900 in February 2008. As of January, the state had 837,700 jobs.

Here's a look at New Mexico's jobs history over the past decade. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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