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For Immediate Release:
 January 18, 2019
Contact: Charles Pearce 617-626-7121
Charles.Pearce@massmail.state.ma.us
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Massachusetts Unemployment and Job Estimates for December
 

BOSTON, MA -- JANUARY 18, 2019 -- The state's total unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.3 percent in December, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics' preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts added 5,600 jobs in December. Over the month, the private sector added 5,500 jobs as gains occurred in Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Other Services; Education and Health Services; Leisure and Hospitality; Manufacturing; Financial Activities; and Information. Construction and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities lost jobs over the month.

From December 2017 to December 2018, BLS estimates Massachusetts has added 65,800 jobs.

The December unemployment rate was six-tenths of a percentage point lower than the national rate of 3.9 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

"Preliminary estimates show an addition of 184,700 residents to the labor force during 2018 - the largest yearly increase in the labor force since the beginning of the series in 1976. These labor force gains, alongside the 65,800 jobs added to the economy last year, are indicators of the continued strength of the job market in the Commonwealth," Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta said.

The labor force increased by 5,000 from 3,837,000 in November, as 8,800 more residents were employed and 3,800 fewer residents were unemployed over the month.

Over the year, the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percentage point.

The state's labor force participation rate - the total number of residents 16 or older who worked or were unemployed and actively sought work in the last four weeks - increased one-tenth of a percentage point to 68.1 percent. Compared to December 2017, the labor force participation rate is up 2.8 percentage points.

The largest private sector percentage job gains over the year were in Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Information; Other Services; and Education and Health Services.

December 2018 Employment Overview
Professional, Scientific and Business Services added 3,700 (+0.6%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific and Business Services gained 30,700 (+5.4%) jobs.

Other Services gained 1,300 (+0.9%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Other Services are up 3,500 (+2.5%) jobs.

Education and Health Services added 700 (+0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Education and Health Services gained 15,600 (+2.0%) jobs.

Leisure and Hospitality gained 400 (+0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality jobs level remained unchanged (0.0%).

Manufacturing added 400 (+0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Manufacturing gained 1,200 (+0.5%) jobs.

Financial Activities gained 400 (+0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities added 600 (+0.3%) jobs.

Information added 300 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Information added 3,500 (+3.9%) jobs.

Construction lost 1,300 (-0.8%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Construction has added 2,900 (+1.8%) jobs.

Trade, Transportation and Utilities lost 400 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Trade, Transportation and Utilities gained 7,900 (+1.4%) jobs.

Government added 100 (0.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Government lost 200 (0.0%) jobs.

Labor Force Overview
The December estimates show 3,715,800 Massachusetts residents were employed and 126,200 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,842,000. The unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.3 percent. The December labor force increased by 5,000 from 3,837,000 in November, as 8,800 more residents were employed and 3,800 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. The labor force participation rate, the share of working age population employed and unemployed, is up one-tenth of a percentage point at 68.1 percent. The labor force was up 184,700 from the 3,657,300 December 2017 estimate, with 187,400 more residents employed and 2,700 fewer residents unemployed.

The unemployment rate is based on a monthly sample of households. The job estimates are derived from a monthly sample survey of employers. As a result, the two statistics may exhibit different monthly trends.

NOTES: The labor force is the sum of the numbers of employed residents and those unemployed, that is residents not working but actively seeking work in the last four weeks. Estimates may not add up to the total labor force due to rounding.

Local area unemployment statistics for December 2018 will be released on Tuesday January 22, 2019. The preliminary January 2019 and revised 2017 and 2018 unemployment rate, labor force and job estimates for Massachusetts will be released on Friday, March 8, 2019. See the 2019 Media Advisory annual schedule for a complete list of release dates.

Detailed labor market information is available at www.mass.gov/lmi.

Statewide Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Statewide Seasonally Adjusted Employment
Statewide Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Statewide Not Seasonally Adjusted Employment
Labor Force and Unemployment Data Current Employment Statistics Data

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Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance
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