Daily News

Massachusetts Unemployment Creeps Down in December

BOSTON — The state’s December total unemployment rate was 3.3%, down one-tenth of a percentage point over-the-month, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 6,300 jobs in December. This follows the previous month’s revised gain of 15,800 jobs. The largest over-the-month private-sector job gains were in professional, scientific, and business services; trade, transportation, and utilities; and leisure and hospitality. Employment now stands at 3,732,900. Since the employment trough in April 2020, Massachusetts has gained 681,900 jobs.

From December 2021 to December 2022, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 134,500 jobs. The largest over-the-year gains occurred in leisure and hospitality, education and health services, and professional and business services.

The December unemployment rate of 3.3% was two-tenths of a percentage point below the national rate of 3.5% reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The labor force decreased by an estimated 7,500 from 3,732,400 in November, with 6,850 fewer residents employed, and 600 fewer residents unemployed over-the-month.

Over-the-year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 1.3 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 by 0.2 percentage points to 65.1% over-the-month. Compared to December 2021, the labor-force participation rate was down four-tenths of a percentage point.