Massachusetts Unemployment Rate Down Slightly in February
BOSTON — The state’s total unemployment rate was down 0.7% in February at 7.1%, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 14,100 jobs in February. This follows last month’s revised gain of 37,900 jobs. Over the month, the private sector added 22,300 jobs as gains occurred across all sectors, led by leisure and hospitality and professional, scientific, and business services.
From February 2020 to February 2021, BLS estimates Massachusetts lost 325,100 jobs. Losses occurred in each of the private sectors with the exception of mining and logging, with the largest-percentage losses in leisure and hospitality, with 30.1% of the jobs lost; other services, with 19.0% of the jobs lost; and education and health services, with 8.9% of the jobs lost.
The February unemployment rate was 0.9% higher than the national rate of 6.2% reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The labor force dropped by 11,900 from 3,756,700 in January, as 15,700 more residents were employed and 27,600 fewer residents were unemployed over the month.
Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was up by 4.3 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 — was down two-tenths of a percentage point at 66.3%. Compared to February 2020, the labor-force participation rate is down one-tenth of a percentage point.