- Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Media Contact for Massachusetts Unemployment and Job Estimates for March 2021
Charles Pearce, Director of Communications, Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
The state’s March total unemployment rate is down 0.2 percentage points at 6.8 percent following a revision to the February unemployment rate of 7.0 percent, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 12,800 jobs in March. This follows last month’s revised gain of 19,700 jobs. Over the month, the private sector added 11,100 jobs as gains occurred across six sectors, led by Leisure and Hospitality, Education and Health Services, and Construction. Since December 2020, Massachusetts has gained 70,400 jobs.
From March 2020 to March 2021, BLS estimates Massachusetts lost 272,700 jobs. Losses occurred in each of the private sectors with the exception of Mining and Logging, with the largest percentage losses in Leisure and Hospitality, with 24.2% of jobs lost; Other Services, with 17.1% of jobs lost; and Education and Health Services, with 7.5% of jobs lost.
The March unemployment rate was 0.8 percentage points higher than the national rate of 6.0 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The labor force increased by 4,500 from 3,740,800 in February, as 14,400 more residents were employed and 9,900 fewer residents were unemployed over the month.
Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was up by 4.1 percentage points.
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 – was up one-tenth of a percentage point at 66.4 percent. Compared to March 2020, the labor force participation rate is up four-tenths of a percentage point.
March 2021 Employment Overview
Leisure and Hospitality gained 6,000 (+2.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality lost 87,600 (-24.2 %) jobs.
Education and Health Services gained 3,000 (+0.4%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Education and Health Services lost 61,700 (-7.5 %) jobs.
Construction gained 2,500 (+1.5%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Construction has lost 1,700 (-1.0%) jobs.
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities gained 900 (+0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Trade, Transportation, and Utilities lost 22,600 (-3.9 %) jobs.
Information gained 300 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Information lost 6,400 (-6.8%) jobs.
Financial Activities showed no change in jobs over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities lost 3,300 (-1.5 %) jobs.
Manufacturing lost 200 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Manufacturing lost 11,900 (-4.9 %) jobs.
Other Services lost 200 (-0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Other Services are down 23,700 (-17.1 %) jobs.
Professional, Scientific, and Business Services lost 1,300 (-0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific, and Business Services lost 15,800 (-2.6 %) jobs.
Government gained 1,700 (+0.4%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Government lost 38,100 (-8.2%) jobs.
Labor Force Overview
The March estimates show 3,492,300 Massachusetts residents were employed and 253,000 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,745,300. The unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percentage point over the month after a revision to the February unemployment rate of 7.0 percent. The March labor force increased by 4,500 from 3,740,800 in February, as 14,400 more residents were employed and 9,900 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. The labor force participation rate, the share of working-age population employed and unemployed, was up one-tenth of a percentage point at 66.4 percent. The labor force was up 16,400 from the 3,728,900 March 2020 estimate, with 134,900 fewer residents employed and 151,300 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.
For further information on seasonal adjustment methodology, please refer to the Bureau of Labor Statistics website https://www.bls.gov.
Local area unemployment statistics for March 2021 will be released on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. The preliminary April 2021 and revised March 2021 unemployment rate, labor force and job estimates for Massachusetts will be released on Friday, May 21, 2021. See the 2021 Media Advisory annual schedule for a complete list of release dates.
Detailed labor market information is available at www.mass.gov/lmi.