The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development announced Thursday that the preliminary unemployment rate is 4 percent for May.

The rate remarkably dropped nearly an entire percentage point from April's revised rate of 4.7 percent.

The national preliminary rate now stands at 4.3 percent.

"It's the lowest rate Tennessee has seen in about 20 years, which is outstanding, and the state figure is now lower than the national average," said Commissioner Burns Phillips.

According to the Tennessee Department of Labor, the last time Tennessee's seasonally adjusted rate was 4 percent or less was March 2001, after reaching 3.9 percent in February 2001.