- Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Media Contact for Massachusetts Unemployment and Job Estimates for October
Charles Pearce, Director of Communications - Exec. Office of Labor and Workforce Development
Boston, Ma — The state’s total unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.5 percent in October, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts added 4,400 jobs in October. Over the month, the private sector gained 4,700 jobs as gains occurred in Education and Health Services; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Information; Construction; Other Services; Manufacturing; and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities. Financial Activities and Leisure and Hospitality lost jobs over the month.
From October 2017 to October 2018, BLS estimates Massachusetts has added 64,400 jobs.
The October unemployment rate was two-tenths of a percentage point lower than the national rate of 3.7 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"The Massachusetts unemployment rate continues to remain low at 3.5 percent and has now held below 4 percent for 30 consecutive months. With the Commonwealth's consistently low rate of unemployment, the economy continues to add jobs at a healthy clip and our labor force continues to grow to meet employment needs, with an additional 169,600 employed residents and 5,200 fewer unemployed over the last year." Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta said.
The labor force increased by 10,800 from 3,822,100 in September, as 12,600 more residents were employed and 1,700 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.5 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 two-tenths of a percentage point over the month at 68.0 percent. Compared to October 2017, the labor force participation rate is up 2.6 percentage points.
The largest private sector percentage job gains over the year were in Construction; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Information; and Education and Health Services.
October 2018 Employment Overview
Education and Health Services added 2,200 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Education and Health Services gained 14,900 (+1.9%) jobs.
Professional, Scientific and Business Services added 1,600 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific and Business Services gained 29,200 (+5.1%) jobs.
Information added 600 (+0.7%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Information added 1,800 (+2.0%) jobs.
Construction added 500 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Construction has added 8,300 (+5.4%) jobs.
Other Services added 400 (+0.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Other Services are up 2,100 (+1.5%) jobs.
Manufacturing added 100 (0.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Manufacturing gained 3,500 (+1.4%) jobs.
Trade, Transportation and Utilities added 100 (0.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Trade, Transportation and Utilities gained 2,400 (+0.4%) jobs.
Leisure and Hospitality lost 400 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality added 1,500 (+0.4%) jobs.
Financial Activities lost 400 (-0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities added 400 (+0.2%) jobs.
Government lost 300 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Government added 300 (+0.1%) jobs.
Labor Force Overview
The October estimates show 3,698,800 Massachusetts residents were employed and 134,100 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,832,900. The unemployment rate dropped one-tenth of a percentage point to 3.5 percent. The October labor force increased by 10,800 from 3,822,100 in September, as 12,600 more residents were employed and 1,700 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. The labor force participation rate, the share of working-age population employed and unemployed, increased two-tenths of a percentage point to 68.0 percent. The labor force was up 174,800 from the 3,658,100 October 2017 estimate, with 169,600 more residents employed and 5,200 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 October 2018 will be released on Tuesday, November 20, 2018. The preliminary November 2018 and revised October 2018 unemployment rate, labor force and job estimates for Massachusetts will be released on Friday, December 21, 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.