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State Unemployment Rate Remains at 4.7% in August

BOSTON — The state’s total unemployment rate remained at 4.7% in August, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced.

The new preliminary job estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate Massachusetts gained 7,200 jobs in August, marking the 12th consecutive month of job gains. Year to date, Massachusetts has added 56,500 jobs.

Preliminary August estimates show the number of employed residents declined by 20,600 and the number of unemployed residents decreased by 2,500, reducing the labor force by 23,100.

Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell 0.9% from 5.6% in August 2014. The August state unemployment rate remains lower than the national rate of 5.1% reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Massachusetts continues to add jobs that strengthen our economy, and the unemployment rate is holding steady, lower than the national average,” Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald Walker II said. “We recognize there are still more than 160,000 people looking for work, and are aligning strategies to better help them find employment.”

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 — decreased 0.5% to 65.3%. The labor-force participation rate over the year has decreased 0.1% compared to August 2014.

August 2015 estimates show that 3,424,000 residents were employed and 167,500 were unemployed. There were 33,200 fewer unemployed persons over the year compared to August 2014. The largest private-sector percentage job gains over the year were in professional, scientific, and business services; construction; and information.

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