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Mass. Adds 13,300 Jobs In February; Jobless Rate Down To 4.5 Percent

The Massachusetts economy added 13,300 jobs last month and the state's unemployment rate fell from 4.7 percent in January to 4.5 percent, according to a release Thursday from the state Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

Labor Secretary Ronald Walker says the the drop in the jobless rate is especially noteworthy because the month of February also saw 6,700 additional people enter the labor market.

"People are active in the market and people are seeking opportunities and getting jobs," he said.

Walker also noted that there had been job growth in nearly every industry over the past year.

"I think it's a positive sign for the state overall," he said. "We have very diverse sectors of growth in the Massachusetts economy."

Thursday's release also revised previously released figures for January. The state originally reported losing 2,500 jobs that month, but now says 1,200 jobs were added.

The February gains follows a report earlier this month that showed the state gained far fewer jobs in 2015 than originally estimated, but also added thousands more jobs in 2014 than previous reported — sending mixed news on the state's job growth.

The state's jobless rate remains below the national unemployment rate of 4.9 percent, and down .6 percent from a rate of 5.1 percent in February 2015.

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