Unemployment in Washington reaches record low

The unemployment rate in Washington fell to its lowest level in nine years in February, The Seattle Times reported, citing figures from the Washington State Employment Security Department. 

The state unemployment rate dropped to 4.9 percent last month, down from 5.1 percent in January. The national unemployment rate in February was 4.7 percent. 

The state is nearing full employment, according to the source, reporting on a statement made by Paul Turek, economist at the Employment Security Department. 

"Washington's economy is moving forward with sustained momentum despite cutbacks in aerospace," he said. "The tech market is propelling western Washington, real estate is strong across the state and other economic segments are maintaining."

Washington gained 6,100 jobs during the month, which helped edge down the unemployment rate to its lowest level since March 2008, according to a press release from the Employment Security Department. Employment gains were particularly strong in the Seattle/Bellevue/Everett area, which saw an unemployment rate of 3.5 percent. 

The labor force in the state reached 3.68 million in February, up 2,500 individuals from the previous month. The release also noted that 77,349 people received unemployment insurance benefits in February. 

The unemployment rate in Washington fell to its lowest level in nine years in February.