Minnesota's rising unemployment rate pulled even with the national average for the first time in more than three decades. The jobless rate nationally and in Minnesota was 4.5 percent in February.
Minnesota has historically enjoyed a lower unemployment rate than the nation as a whole.
Since 1976, Minnesota's jobless rate has been an average of 1.4 percentage points lower than the U.S. rate.
For several months, the U.S. jobless rate has generally been in a holding pattern around 4.5 percent, while Minnesota's unemployment rate has been rising since last August.
In February, Minnesota's economy shed 1,200 jobs. Among 11 major industry sectors, five gained jobs and five lost employment. One was flat.
"February was really a month of miniscule change," said Dan McElroy, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.