WASHINGTON (CBSDFW/AP) – Unemployment rates fell in nearly all U.S. states last month, and half the states now have rates below 6 percent. The figures are a sign of widespread, if slow, improvement in the nation’s job market.

The Labor Department says unemployment rates fell in 43 states in April, rose in two states and were unchanged in five.

Hiring is picking up as well. Employers added jobs in 39 states.

Lisa Givens with the Texas Workforce Commission says that Fort Worth and Arlington also saw thousands of new construction jobs added in April. Other industries that saw a nice jump  including professional services and hospitality.

Texas’ unemployment rate fell to 5.2 percent in April from 5.5 percent in March and employers added 64,100 jobs last month, the most of any state.

Locally Dallas, Colin and Tarrant Counties saw a lower combined unemployment rate of 4.7 percent.

Hiring wasn’t the whole reason rates fell in many states: Fewer Americans also looked for work.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The staff of CBSDFW.COM contributed to this report)

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