Mass. Added 5,900 Jobs Last Month; Jobless Rate Ticks Up To 4.7 Percent

Massachusetts added 5,900 jobs last month, according to preliminary federal estimates out Thursday, and the state unemployment rate ticked up one-tenth of a percentage point, to 4.7 percent.

Despite the rise, it's still below the national jobless rate of 5 percent.

The Massachusetts labor force declined 3,300 in November, Thursday's jobs report said, as 5,200 fewer residents were employed and 1,900 more residents were unemployed over the month.

The jobless rate — a ratio — is affected by jobs figures and the size of the labor force, which tallies those working or "actively seeking" work.

Thursday's report also revised down the state jobs estimate for October, from an initially reported 11,000 to 10,000, according to new figures.

So far in 2015, Massachusetts has added an estimated 67,700 jobs. As we reported last month, that tally surpasses the total for all of 2014, and 2014 was the state's strongest year for job growth since 2000.

"The Commonwealth continues to add jobs, and we are very pleased we have surpassed the total job gains for 2014. The state continues to show signs of economic strength," Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald Walker II said in a statement.

The jobs figures are based on a survey of employers, with the unemployment rate based on a survey of households. Both the jobs numbers and the unemployment rate are subject to revision.

Thursday's state jobs report came a day after the Federal Reserve announced — for the first time in years — an interest rate hike.

Chair Janet Yellen said the central bank's decision "reflects [the Fed's] confidence in the U.S. economy."


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Benjamin Swasey Digital Manager
Ben is WBUR's digital news manager.



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