MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) -- The Vermont Department of Labor says the state's unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of one percent last month to 4.4 percent, the fifth lowest rate in the country.
Vermont Labor Commissioner Annie Noonan says the state is ending the calendar year with continued economic growth.
The Vermont rate compares to a national unemployment rate last month of 7 percent last month.
Unemployment in Vermont's 17 labor markets ranged from a low of 2.5 percent in Hartford to a high of 5.8 percent in the Newport area.
Employment sectors that had significant job growth last month include leisure and hospitality, which added about 1,800 jobs, and manufacturing, 400 jobs.
The most significant declines came from state government, which dropped 300 jobs and financial activities, down 100 jobs.