September 21, 2018

Mass. unemployment stays at 3.6%

Bay State employers added 6,000 jobs last month and have added 68,100 jobs since August 2017, the state announced Friday as the unemployment rate held firm at 3.6 percent in August.

The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development said the state's labor force -- the number of people employed or not working but actively seeking work in the last four weeks -- increased to 3,806,100 in July, with 3,668,800 Massachusetts residents employed and 137,300 unemployed.

The greatest private sector job gains over the year, by percentage, were in the construction; professional, scientific and business services; leisure and hospitality; and other services, the state said.

"The August estimates indicate the Commonwealth's labor force and employment are at their highest levels while our unemployment rate remains consistently low -- all indicators of the continuing positive economic outlook for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts," Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta said.

The August unemployment rate for Massachusetts is lower than the national jobless rate of 3.9 percent.

The state said the labor force participation rate -- the share of residents 16 years or older who worked or were unemployed but actively sought work in the last four weeks -- was up by three-tenths of a percentage point to 67.6 percent in August. Compared to the previous August, the labor force participation rate was up 2.1 points.

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