Ariz. jobless rate for September hits 5.9 percent

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PHOENIX (AP) -- Arizona's unemployment rate is up again.

The Department of Commerce reports that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for September was 5.9 percent, up from 5.6 percent in August and 3.8 percent in September 2007.

Department officials say retail trade employment was hit hard, losing 4,400 jobs, as consumers cut back on spending due to the weakening economy.

Construction lost 4,000 jobs for the 13th straight month of losses. Since September 2007, the industry has lost 38,600 jobs, or 17.2 percent of its pre-downturn workforce.

Government added 16,600 jobs in September.

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