Massachusetts Adds Jobs in May as Unemployment Stagnates

The state’s May total unemployment rate is up one-tenth of a percentage point at 16.3 percent following a revision to the April rate of 16.2 percent, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts added 58,600 jobs in May. This follows last month’s revised loss of 646,700 jobs. Over the month, the private sector added 65,700 jobs as gains occurred in Construction; Leisure and Hospitality; Education and Health Services; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; Trade, Transportation, and Utilities; Other Services; Manufacturing; and Financial Activities. Information and Government lost jobs over the month.

From May 2019 to May 2020, BLS estimates Massachusetts lost 605,000 jobs.

Losses occurred in each of the private sectors, with the largest percentage losses in Leisure and Hospitality; Other Services; Construction; and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities.

The May unemployment rate was three percentage point above the national rate of 13.3 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The labor force increased by 123,200 from 3,406,900 in April, as 100,000 more residents were employed and 23,200 more residents were unemployed over the month.

Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased by 13.4 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 to 62.4 percent. Compared to May 2019, the labor force participation rate is down by 5.1 percentage points.

May 2020 Employment Overview

• Construction added 17,400 (+16.5%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Construction has lost 39,200 (-24.2%) jobs.

• Leisure and Hospitality gained 12,400 (+9.0%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Leisure and Hospitality lost 225,200 (-59.9%) jobs.

• Education and Health Services added 11,100 (+1.5%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Education and Health Services lost 83,100 (-10.2%) jobs.

• Professional, Scientific and Business Services gained 8,000 (+1.4%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Professional, Scientific and Business Services lost 37,900 (-6.3%) jobs.

• Trade, Transportation and Utilities added 6,700 (+1.5%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Trade, Transportation and Utilities lost 113,200 (-19.6%) jobs.

• Other Services gained 6,600 (+7.7%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Other Services are down -47,100 (-33.8%) jobs.

• Manufacturing added 5,100 (+2.3%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Manufacturing lost 20,200 (-8.3%) jobs.

• Financial Activities gained 1,400 (+0.6%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Financial Activities lost 2,500 (-1.1%) jobs.

• Information lost 300 (-3.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Information lost 1,400 (-1.5%) jobs. • Government lost 7,100 (-1.7%) jobs over the month. Over the year, Government lost 34,900 (-7.6%) jobs.

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