The state unemployment rate dropped to 5.2 percent in September, according to Iowa Workforce Development. Unemployment stood at 5.5 percent in August and 5.9 percent one year ago.
National unemployment fell in September to 7.8 percent from 8.1 percent the previous month.
The number of unemployed Iowans decreased from 89,700 to 85,800 in September. The 3,900-person drop is the largest monthly loss in this measure for the year.
Construction gained 2,200 jobs, ending the five months of losses and putting the industry back into the positive year-over-year column. Professional and business services grew by 1,300 after two consecutive monthly losses.
Trade and transportation lost 700 jobs and manufacturing was down by 600. An unexpected decline in health care accounted for the overall drop of 500 in education and health services.
Despite the sector's recent weakness, manufacturing continues to lead all industries in over-the-year job growth, adding a total of 7,700 jobs; financial activities is a distant second, adding 2,800 jobs; and construction ranks in third place, adding 1,800 jobs.
The retail sector has fallen since February, losing a total of 1,900 jobs.