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Boston and Beyond

September 20, 2012

Unemployment rises in Mass. to 6.3 percent

August loses 4,800 jobs

BOSTON — The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development today reported that the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary August 2012 estimates show that Massachusetts lost 4,800 jobs over the month, for a total of 3,243,200 jobs.

The August job loss follows a revised gain of 300 jobs in July.

The total unemployment rate inched up from 6.1 percent in July to 6.3 percent in August. The unemployment rate is down 1.1 percentage points from the August 2011 rate of 7.4 percent.

The three-month average seasonally adjusted total unemployment rate was 6.1 percent and the six-month average was 6.2 percent. Year-to-date jobs are up 31,400 with private sector jobs up 29,900. Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Trade, Transportation, and Utilities show the largest gains.

Over the year, August 2011 to August 2012, jobs are up 40,200. Private sector jobs are up 41,000, for a growth rate of 1.5 percent with gains in six of the ten sectors.

The following is a breakdown, by sector, of job gains or losses:

Financial activities added 300 jobs in August, but over the year, the sector has lost 1,400 (-0.7%) jobs.
 
Mining and logging employment gained 100 while over the year employment remained unchanged.
 
Manufacturing had no change in employment over the month. Over the year, manufacturing has added 2,100 jobs.
 
Education and health services lost 2,600 jobs in August, with educational services losing 2,000 jobs and health care and social assistance losing 600. Over the year, Education and Health Services added 2,800 jobs.
 
Professional, Scientific, and Business Services lost 1,900 jobs over the month, the sector’s first monthly loss since June 2011. Over the year, the sector has added 24,300 jobs due mostly to growth in Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services, which added 15,200 jobs. Administrative, Support, and Waste Management and Management of Companies also had significant gains over the year with 7,600 jobs. 
 
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities shed 1,400 jobs due to losses in Retail Trade. Year to date, the sector added 9,500 jobs. Over the year, the sector added 10,100 jobs with most of the growth in Retail Trade which gained 6,300 jobs. 
 
Construction lost 1,400 jobs over the month. Over the year, jobs are down 5,200.
 
Leisure and Hospitality lost 800 jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality gained 1,300 jobs.
 
Information lost 400 jobs over the month. Over the year, the sector added 9,200.
 
Government gained 3,400 jobs over the month. State Government posted a 2,500 jobs gain over the month while Federal government added 1,300 . Local Government lost 400 jobs. Over the year, Government lost 800 jobs.

The August 2012 estimates show 3,229,600 Massachusetts residents were employed and 218,800 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,448,400. Over the year, 33,000 more residents are employed and 34,800 fewer residents are unemployed. Since the unemployment rate peaked at 8.7 percent in October 2009, there are 69,100 more residents employed and 82,200 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.

 

 

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