Nebraska jobless rate at 2.8 percent in February; Iowa’s 2.4 percent tied for lowest in nation

LINCOLN — Nebraska’s unemployment rate in February remained at 2.8 percent for the seventh month in a row, according to a report released Friday.

The Nebraska Labor Department said the preliminary February rate was just under the year-ago figure of 2.9 percent. It also was well below the national figure of 3.8 percent, which is down from 4 percent in January.

Iowa’s unemployment rate of 2.4 percent last month leaves it tied with New Hampshire, North Dakota and Vermont for the lowest rate in the nation.

The preliminary nonfarm employment figure last month for Nebraska was 1.01 million, up nearly 3,800 over the year and up 1,000 over the month, the report said. Private industries with the most growth year over year were education and health services, up 1,168; financial activities, up 1,072; and leisure and hospitality, up 1,008. Month to month, the largest gains were in education and health, up 1,425; professional and business services, up 1,211; and manufacturing, up 741.

The preliminary Omaha-area rate for February was unchanged from January’s 3.2 percent. Lincoln’s preliminary rate also held steady at 2.7 percent. Grand Island’s preliminary rate dropped to 3.3 percent in February from 4.6 percent in January.

The rates for Grand Island, Lincoln and Omaha have not been seasonally adjusted and cannot be directly compared with the state unemployment rate.