State jobless rate edges up to 3.9 percent in April

Jobs growth likely to remain under pressure with consumer showing a reluctance to spend up big

The Massachusetts economy added 3,900 jobs in April, as the statewide unemployment rate ticked up to 3.9 percent.

MA added 3,900 jobs in April, according to the preliminary job estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

While the economy is growing at just over 7% per year, jobs increased by just 1.1% last year, according to a recently-released report covering eight key sectors of the non-farm economy.

The Massachusetts unemployment rate remains lower than the national rate of 4.4 percent in April. It has left rates unchanged since it last eased in August 2016.

Regionally the New Haven labor market area saw the largest gain in April, adding 900 jobs, while the Danbury and Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk markets also finished the month with job growth. Other sectors reported more modest gains, like education and health services (1,100 jobs), and trade, transportation and utilities (1,000 jobs).

The seasonally-adjusted rate is 1 percent lower than it was this time previous year. "This continues to indicate that workers are entering or rejoining the labor force and many are finding work". The increase in United States of America transportation sector hiring follows revised gains of 6,600 jobs in March and 7,600 positions in February and a 10,200-job loss in January. Both these sectors are known for low paying jobs.

The Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford market recorded the largest job loss, down 1,000 positions, while the Norwich-New London-Westerly and Waterbury markets also lost positions in April. Nondurable manufacturing accounted for the rest of the decrease this month. Since April 2016, this sector is up 4,400 jobs or 1.1 percent.

The mining and logging sector declined by 200 jobs in April 2017.

The labor force includes those who are employed and those actively seeking work. Employment statistics undergo sharp fluctuations due to seasonal events, such as weather changes, harvests, holidays and school openings and closings. However, because of the small sample size, county unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted.

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