Press Release

Press Release  Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for February 2023

For immediate release:
3/24/2023
  • Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
  • Department of Economic Research

Media Contact for Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for February 2023

Michele Campbell, Director of Communications

February Unemployment Rate 3.7%

Boston, MAMarch 24, 2023The state’s February total unemployment rate was 3.7 percent, up two-tenths of a percentage point from the revised January estimate of 3.5 percent, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 3,000 jobs in February. This follows January’s revised gain of 8,900 jobs. The largest over-the-month private sector job gains were in Professional, Scientific, and Business Services, Education and Health Services, and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities. Employment now stands at 3,735,800. Since the employment trough in April 2020, Massachusetts gained 674,200 jobs.

From February 2022 to February 2023, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 91,700 jobs. The largest over-the-year gains occurred in Professional, Scientific, and Business Services, Education and Health Services, and Leisure and Hospitality.

The February unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was 0.1 percentage points above the national rate of 3.6 percent reported by BLS.

The labor force increased by an estimated 11,700 from 3,729,800 in January, as 6,800 more residents were employed, and 4,800 more residents were unemployed over-the-month.

Over-the-year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 0.2 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 – increased by 0.2 percentage points to 65.0 percent over-the-month. Compared to February 2022, the labor force participation rate was down 0.4 percentage points.

February 2023 Employment Overview

Professional, Scientific, and Business Services gained 2,600 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 25,200 were added.

Education and Health Services gained 2,500 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 21,500 were added.

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities gained 300 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 6,900 were added.

Construction gained 200 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 2,800 were added.

Manufacturing gained 200 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 500 were added.

Information gained 200 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 1,100 were added.

Financial Activities gained 100 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 7,500 were added.

Government lost 300 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 9,700 were added.

Other Services lost 600 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 4,200 were added.

Leisure and Hospitality lost 2,100 jobs over-the-month. Over-the-year, 12,200 were added.

Labor Force Overview

The February estimates show 3,604,200 Massachusetts residents were employed and 137,200 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,741,500. The unemployment rate at 3.7 percent was up 0.2 percentage points from the revised January rate of 3.5 percent. Over-the-month, the February labor force grew by 11,700 from 3,729,800 in January, with 6,800 more residents employed, and 4,800 more residents were unemployed. The labor force participation rate, the share of working age population employed and unemployed, increased by 0.2 percentage points to 65.0 percent over-the-month. The labor force was down 14,700 from the February 2022 estimate of 3,756,200, with 6,200 fewer employed residents, and 8,500 fewer unemployed residents.

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.

NOTES:

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.

The preliminary March 2023 and revised February 2023 unemployment rate, labor force and job estimates for Massachusetts will be released on Friday, April 21, 2023. See the 2023 Media Advisory annual schedule for a complete list of release dates.

Detailed labor market information is available at www.mass.gov/economicresearch.

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Media Contact for Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for February 2023

  • Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development  

    The mission of EOLWD is to create, operate and oversee effective and innovative statewide services to: protect worker rights, health, safety, wages and working conditions; insure against job-related injury; provide individuals and families with economic stability following job loss or injury and illness; level the playing field for responsible employers; develop a pipeline of skilled workers for current, emerging and future employers; and, maintain labor harmony between employees, employers, and labor unions.
  • Department of Economic Research  

    The Department of Economic Research (formerly the Labor Market Information Division) produces, analyzes, and distributes various data, labor market reports, and other resources related to employment, unemployment, occupations, industries, and other components of the Massachusetts labor market.
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