Mississippi's job market softened slightly in May, as unemployment ticked up and payrolls dipped

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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi’s job market softened slightly in May, as unemployment ticked up and payrolls dipped.

The jobless rate rose to 4.7 percent in May from 4.6 percent in April, as more people entered the labor force than found jobs. That’s slightly above the 4.5 percent record set in March, the lowest recorded since current surveys began in 1976. The jobless rate in May 2017 was 5.3 percent.

The number of unemployed Mississippians rose to almost 60,000.

The separate payroll survey — economists’ top labor market indicator — drifted down to 1.16 million in May. That’s just below March’s record and is 16,000 jobs above last year.

May’s U.S. unemployment rate fell to 3.8 percent from April’s 3.9 percent.

The U.S. Labor Department released figures Friday, adjusted to cancel out seasonal changes.