Utah officials say the state's December unemployment rate has dropped to 6 percent, and the number of jobs in Utah has increased 3 percent compared to last year.
Statistics released Thursday show the December unemployment rate is down from 6.4 percent the previous month, and down from 7.4 percent three months earlier.
Officials say the rapid decline comes as people are leaving the labor force and as Utah is adding jobs.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the state added 36,300 nonfarm jobs last year, and posted gains in all industrial sectors except government. The business and professional services sector led the way by adding 11,000 positions last year.
Utah's jobless rate is below the national rate of 8.5 percent.