The February Employment Situation in Massachusetts: URate at 4.7; New jobs at 14,600

Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for February 

BOSTON, MA – The state’s February total unemployment rate decreased by one-tenth of a percentage point at 4.7 percent over the month, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 14,600 jobs in February. This follows last month’s revised gain of 9,400 jobs. The largest over the month private sector job gains were in Leisure and Hospitality, Trade, Transportation, and Utilities, Education and Health Services, and Manufacturing. Employment now stands at 3,662,400.  Since the employment trough in April 2020, Massachusetts gained 571,400 jobs. 

From February 2021 to February 2022, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 173,500 jobs. The largest over the year gains occurred in Leisure and Hospitality; Professional, Scientific, and Business Services; and Education and Health Services. Financial Activities was the only sector to see job losses. 

The February unemployment rate of 4.7 percent was 0.9 percentage point above the national rate reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

The labor force increased by an estimated 5,500 from 3,766,900 in January, as 9,900 more residents were employed, and 4,400 fewer residents were unemployed over the month. 

Over the year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 2.0 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 65.9 percent over the month. Compared to February 2021, the labor force participation rate was up 0.8 percentage point. 

February 2022 Employment Overview 

Leisure and Hospitality gained 4,700 (+1.4%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 71,600 (+26.9%) jobs were added. 

Trade, Transportation and Utilities gained 4,600 (+0.8%) over the month. Over the year, 16,700 (+3.0%) jobs were added. 

Education and Health Services gained 1,600 (+0.2%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 21,900 (+2.8%) jobs were added. 

Manufacturing gained 1,600 (+0.7%) jobsover the month. Over the year, 5,900 (+2.6%) jobs were added. 

Other Services gained 1,200 (+0.9%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 10,800 (+9.1%) jobs were added. 

Information gained 800 (+0.8%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 4,200 (+4.6%) jobs were added. 

Government gained 500 (+0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 11,800 (+2.8%) jobs were added. 

Construction gained 200(+0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 8,400 (+5.2%) jobs were added. 

Financial Activities lost 300 jobs (-0.1%) over the month. Over the year, 3,900 (-1.8%) jobs were lost. 

Professional and Business Services lost 400 (-0.1%) jobs over the month. Over the year, 25,900 (+4.3%) jobs were added. 

Labor Force Overview 

The February estimates show 3,596,500 Massachusetts residents were employed and 175,900 were unemployed, for a total labor force of 3,772,400. The unemployment rate was down 0.1 percentage point at 4.7 percent from the January rate of 4.8 percent. Over the month, the February labor force was up by 5,500 from 3,766,900 in January, with 9,900 more residents employed and 4,400 fewer residents unemployed. The labor force participation rate, the share of working age population employed and unemployed, increased by 0.1 percentage point at 65.9 percent. The labor force was up 38,900 from the February 2021 estimate of 3,733,500, as 113,700 more residents were employed, and 74,900 fewer residents were 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.  

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