- Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Media Contact for Massachusetts Unemployment and Job Estimates for August
Charles Pearce, Director of Communications - Exec. Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Boston, MA — The state’s total unemployment rate remained at 3.6 percent in August, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts added 6,100 jobs in August. Over the month, the private sector added 6,000 jobs as gains occurred in Education and Health Services; Leisure and Hospitality; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Information; Construction; and Financial Activities.
From August 2017 to August 2018, BLS estimates Massachusetts has added 68,100 jobs.
The August unemployment rate was three-tenths of a percentage point lower than the national rate of 3.9 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"The August estimates indicate the Commonwealth’s labor force and employment are at their highest levels while our unemployment rate remains consistently low - all indicators of the continuing positive economic outlook for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts." Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta said.
The labor force increased by 20,300 from 3,785,800 in July, as 18,800 more residents were employed and 1,500 more residents were unemployed over the month.
Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.6 percent.
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 – is up three-tenths of a percentage point over the month at 67.6 percent. Compared to August 2017, the labor force participation rate is up 2.1 percentage points.
The largest private sector percentage job gains over the year were in Construction; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Leisure and Hospitality; and Other Services.
August 2018 Employment Overview
Education and Health Services added 2,500 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Education and Health Services gained 9,800 (+1.2%) jobs.
Leisure and Hospitality gained 1,700 (+0.4%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality added 11,300 (+3.1%) jobs.
Professional, Scientific, and Business Services added 1,500 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific, and Business Services added 28,100 (+5.0%) jobs.
Information gained 900 jobs (+0.1%) over the month. Over the year, Information added 100 (+0.1%) jobs.
Construction added 500 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Construction has added 10,700 (+7.0%) jobs.
Financial Activities gained 200 jobs (+0.1%) over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities added 1,300 (+0.6%) jobs.
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities lost 600 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Trade, Transportation, and Utilities lost 800 (-0.1%) jobs.
Manufacturing lost 600 (-0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Manufacturing gained 4,400 (+1.8%) jobs.
Other Services lost 100 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Other Services are up 3,600 (+2.6%) jobs.
Government added 100 (0.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Government lost 500 (-0.1%) jobs.
Labor Force Overview
The August estimates show 3,668,800 Massachusetts residents were employed and 137,300 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,806,100. The unemployment rate remained at 3.6 percent. The August labor force increased by 20,300 from 3,785,800 in July, as 18,800 more residents were employed and 1,500 more residents were unemployed over the month. The labor force participation rate, the share of working age population employed and unemployed, increased three-tenths of a percentage point to 67.6 percent. The labor force was up 145,700 from the 3,660,400 August 2017 estimate, with 141,800 more residents employed and 3,900 more residents unemployed.
The unemployment rate is based on a monthly sample of households. The job estimates are derived from a monthly sample survey of employers. As a result, the two statistics may exhibit different monthly trends.
The labor force is the sum of the numbers of employed residents and those unemployed, that is residents not working but actively seeking work in the last four weeks. Estimates may not add up to the total labor force due to rounding.
Local area unemployment statistics for August 2018 will be released on Tuesday, September 25, 2018. The preliminary September 2018 and revised August 2018 unemployment rate, labor force and job estimates for Massachusetts will be released on Friday, October 19, 2018. See the 2018 Revised Media Advisory annual schedule for a complete list of release dates.
Detailed labor market information is available at www.mass.gov/lmi.