Mass. Added 9,100 Jobs In February; Jobless Rate Unchanged
Massachusetts employers added 9,100 jobs last month, but the state unemployment rate held steady at 6.9 percent, according the latest jobs report.
The reason the unemployment rate held steady even though more people got jobs is that other people joined the labor force, looking for work.
Michael Goodman, an economist at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, says that’s a good sign.
"As people who might have been too discouraged to search for work come to the realization that there might be opportunities materializing in the labor market, they re-enter that workforce," Goodman said.
The fastest-growing sector was leisure and hospitality, which Goodman says has been a volatile industry lately.
"And so while I take it as a good sign that we're still moving in the right direction, I would be really cautious about reading too much into the details," he said.
Even so, he says the unemployment report shows that the Massachusetts economy continues down the road to recovery.
State employers have added 23,000 jobs this year, after January's jobs figure was revised up from 6,600 to 13,900.
Th national unemployment rate in February was 8.3 percent.
This article was originally published on March 22, 2012.
This program aired on March 22, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.