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Mass. unemployment rate drops to 8.1 percent as 10,000 jobs added

Mass. unemployment rate drops to 8.1 percent as 10,000 jobs added
By Herald staff  |   Thursday, November 18, 2010  |  http://www.bostonherald.com  |  Business & Markets

The state’s unemployment rate last month plunged to 8.1 percent, marking the second straight month of a steep decline in the jobless rate.

New data shows that employers added 10,000 jobs to payrolls in October, most of them in the education and health-care fields.

The state’s jobless rate in now substantially lower than the national rate of 9.6 percent.

Many economists had feared that the state might face a rough October on the jobs front, due to the mixed news from September, when the jobless rate fell to 8.4 percent from 8.9 percent, but employers also cut a substantial number of payroll, a figure that was revised slightly upward to 21,300 in today’s report.

The contradictory September data – based on two separate reports – led some to believe that jobs creation was sputtering out in Massachusetts.

But the October numbers were unmistakably clear.

The education and health-care sectors gained 5,100 jobs last month, after losing 7,100 jobs in September, according to the state Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

The leisure and hospitality sector gained 2,800 jobs, after a loss of 11,900 jobs in September.

Two areas of concern are the construction and professional/scientific services industries, which lost a combined 2,400 jobs.

Over the past year, employers have added 48,300 private-sector jobs to payrolls in Massachusetts.

“Today, we have more promising economic news. Since September, the unemployment rate has experienced its steepest decline in more than 30 years and just last month we added 10,000 jobs,” said newly re-elected Gov. Deval Patrick. “Putting people to work will remain at the top of my agenda because, despite these positive developments, we have more to do. I will not rest until everyone who is looking for a job can find one.”

Article URL: http://www.bostonherald.com/business/general/view.bg?articleid=1297317

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