ST. PAUL (WJON News) -- Minnesota's unemployment rate ticked up slightly last month, ending a streak of 14 months of job growth.

The unemployment rate in December was 2.5 percent, up from 2.3 percent in November.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development says the private sector gained 900 jobs in the month, but there was a loss of 6,100 jobs in the government sector, mainly in local government.

The labor force participation rate remained steady at 67.9 percent with nearly 3,400 people entering the labor force.

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Nationally, the unemployment rate went down one-tenth of a point to 3.5 percent.

Meanwhile, inflation continues to outpace wage growth.  In Minnesota, average hourly wages for all private sector workers rose 32 cents to $35.57.

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