Minnesota's chief labor market analyst said he is concerned that the nation's recent jobs report could signal weakness in the state's employment numbers, due out this week.
The analyst, Steve Hine, noted that the nation added just 88,000 jobs in March, far fewer than expected. Strong labor demand and low unemployment claims in Minnesota may not be enough of a buffer against a national slowdown, he said.
"In terms of the levels, job openings are where we'd like to see them and layoffs, as measured by unemployment claims, are also where we'd like to see them, fairly low, down to levels that we saw before the recession hit," Hine said. "But the trajectories are pointing to a little more wait and see right now."
Federal budget cuts known as sequestration and other drags on the economy could hamper Minnesota's job growth, which has been outpacing the nation's, Hine said.
"The weakness in March's national numbers has to be a bit concerning as we start to look at what happened in the state over the same time period," he said.