NM again posts fifth-highest unemployment rate in the nation

Dec. 17—New Mexico's unemployment continued to inch downward in November, but remained the fifth-highest in the nation, according to new data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

New Mexico posted a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 6.2% last month, down from 6.5% in October. The November figure was lower than California, Nevada, New York and New Jersey and narrowly higher than Alaska, Connecticut and Hawaii, according to BLS.

The national unemployment rate stood at 4.2% in November. New Mexico's private sector employment grew by 39,400 jobs, or 6.4%, year over year, according to state-specific data from the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions.

Leisure and hospitality experienced the largest employment growth with a gain of 12,300 jobs, or 15.%, compared to last November. However, data from the state agency shows the industry remains well shy of its pre-pandemic job totals. New Mexico's professional and business services sector added 8,500 jobs year over year, an 8% increase. Additionally, the state's retail trade subsector has added 3,700 jobs since last November, a 3.3% increase, according to DWS.

Data from the state workforce agency showed that Los Alamos County continued to have the lowest unemployment rate in the state, at 2.3% in November. Luna County, near the state's southern border, again posted the highest rate, at 12.7% in November.