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Byline: Richard Craver
May 20--A higher level of activity by employers and job seekers during April helped to offset a slight increase in the state's jobless rate to 5.3 percent, economists said yesterday.
"There's nothing really significant in the rate increase itself," said Michael Helmar, an economist at Economy.com who focuses on North Carolina. "But the underlying data is quite encouraging because several sectors created jobs during April."
The N.C. Employment Security Commission reported a net gain of 13,400 jobs in the state during April. The professional and business services sector has the biggest job increase at 4,500, followed by 3,100 in …