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Massachusetts Announces Unemployment, Job Estimates for August

BOSTON — The state’s August total unemployment rate is down 4.9 percentage points at 11.3% following a revision to the July rate at 16.2%, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts added 51,600 jobs in August. This follows last month’s revised gain of 70,900 jobs. Over the month, the private sector added 51,200 jobs as gains occurred in education and health services; leisure and hospitality; trade, transportation, and utilities; professional, scientific, and business services; manufacturing; other services; information; and construction. The one loss occurred in financial activities. Government added jobs over the month.

From August 2019 to August 2020, BLS estimates Massachusetts lost 403,200 jobs. Losses occurred in each of the private sectors, with the largest-percentage losses in leisure and hospitality; other services; construction; and trade, transportation, and utilities.

The August unemployment rate was 2.9% above the national rate of 8.4% reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The labor force decreased by 127,600 from 3,673,400 in July, as 65,400 more residents were employed and 193,100 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased by 8.5 percentage points.

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 — dropped to 62.6%. Compared to August 2019, the labor-force participation rate is down by 5.2%.


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