Unemployment rates fell in more than half the 50 U.S. states in March even though job growth slowed sharply from the previous months, the government said Friday. However, the jobless rates fell largely because many unemployed people stopped looking for work and were no longer counted as unemployed.The Labor Department said unemployment rates fell in 26 states, rose in seven, and were unchanged in 17. Only 23 states reported a net gain in hiring in March, the fewest since August 2011. Employers cut jobs in 26 states, and one state reported little change. The performance was much worse than in February, when 42 states reported job gains.Nationally, hiring slowed sharply in March. Employers added only 88,000 net jobs, down from an average of 220,000 from November through February.