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Lansing — Michigan’s unemployment rate edged upward to 5 percent in December as the number of people entering the job market continued to increase.

The Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget said Wednesday the rate rose from 4.9 percent in November and compared with a national December jobless rate of 4.7 percent but still marked an improvement over Michigan’s year-ago rate of 5.1 percent.

The agency says the state’s workforce rose by 14,000 during December to nearly 4.8 million people, with increases in both total employment at 9,000 jobs and in unemployed workers at 5,000.

Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives Director Jason Palmer says the second half of 2016 was marked by “robust labor force expansion” and the year had Michigan’s strongest workforce growth rate since 1999.

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