Governor Matt Blunt says Missouri’s economy is improving. He says figures from the State Economic Development Department indicate Missouri has seen an increase of 40,000 jobs in the first six months of the year, with the unemployment rate dropping below five-and-a-half percent. Blunt is particularly pleased with the growth of 5,000 jobs in the manufacturing sector. Statistics from the Economic Development Department indicate personal income is up, which has spurred a jump in retail sales. Blunt says the report is a sign that the state is headed in the right direction.