The unemployment rate in Hawaii dropped to 5.2% after the state posted a gain of nearly 12,000 jobs in 2012, according to a report from the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

The state’s rate continues to compare favorably to the national rate of 7.8%.

The rate is the lowest level Hawaii has posted in four years, although still not down to 2007 levels, according to the report.

That is the lowest the rate has been since 2008 when it hit 5%, according to the DLIR.

The rate dropped to its current level from 5.3% in November, marking the fifth straight month of declines in the jobless rate.

The island state saw rates in the 6% to 7% range during the three previous years.

The biggest job gains were in leisure and hospitality with an increase of 4,700 positions; trade, transportation and utilities with 4,400 new positions; and construction, which gained 1,800 jobs.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.