Mass. Adds 13,900 Jobs In April; Unemployment Rate Drops To 4.2 Percent

Massachusetts employers added 13,900 jobs in April and the state's jobless rate dropped two tenths of a percentage point to 4.2 percent, state officials reported Thursday morning.

In another good sign, the state's labor force -- that is, people working and actively seeking work -- also grew last month, increasing by 15,400.

Massachusetts employers have added 35,600 jobs so far in 2016, according to the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

"We see continued strong job gains in many of the traditional economic drivers for the state, such as professional and scientific, education and health care, leisure and hospitality, trade, transportation and utilities," Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Ronald Walker II said in a statement. "The strong job gains in April are on the heels of [a revised] 6,600 jobs added in March, and 13,900 jobs added in February."

The "strong job gains" have coincided with a recent slowdown in state tax revenue growth. Tax receipts are up just 2 percent over the first 10 months of fiscal 2016 and Gov. Charlie Baker estimated this week that the state faces a $250 million budget gap with only weeks left in the fiscal year.

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

With reporting by the WBUR Newsroom and State House News Service

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