Employers Add 7,400 Jobs in January


Connecticut added 7,400 jobs in January, led by strong gains in the educational and health services and professional and business services sectors.

At 1,703,200 jobs, Connecticut employment is now at its highest point since August 2008.

Employment in the state peaked at 1,720,900 in March 2008, right as the financial crisis sparked a three-year recession.

“The year is off to a promising start,” said CBIA president and CEO Chris DiPentima. “It’s imperative that we seize this opportunity and build on our momentum.”

Gov. Ned Lamont called the job growth numbers “positive news for our economy, but we cannot afford to take our foot off the gas.”

“This data is also a reminder that when the state strengthens our own fiscal health and adopts balanced, gimmick-free budgets—as we have done for the last several years—it gives employers the confidence to expand in our state and add more jobs,” he said in a statement.

Labor Force

Connecticut has now recovered 102% of the 289,100 jobs lost to pandemic disruptions in March and April of 2020.

The state’s labor force—those working and those actively looking for work—also grew by 2,400 in January after growing 0.6% in 2023.

The labor force now has 28,700 fewer people (-1.5%) than in Feb. 2020, with the worker shortage the greatest challenge to economic growth.

Connecticut has 94,000 job openings—more than double where we were 10 years ago—or 1.1 job openings for every unemployed person,” DiPentima said.

Connecticut has 94,000 job openings, more than double the number 10 years ago.

“As we work through the legislative session, policymakers must remain focused on solutions to solve the labor shortage and continue to address the high costs of living and running a business.

“Providing more affordable healthcare and childcare options, tackling the housing crisis, and improving opportunities for women, immigrants, returning citizens, veterans, and those from underserved and often forgotten communities are critical to making this a top state to live and work.”

The state Department of Labor’s January employment report also revised the 2023 numbers, with the initially reported gain of 22,700 jobs for that year revised down to a net 18,400 new hires.

Connecticut’s unemployment rate increased two-tenths of a point to 4.4% in January. The national rate is 3.7%.

Industry Sectors, Labor Markets

Employment expanded in six of Connecticut’s 10 major industry sectors in January, led by education and health services, which added 4,300 jobs (1.2%).

Professional and business services gained 3,200 positions (1.4%), followed by leisure and hospitality (800; 0.5%), manufacturing (800; 0.5%), government (800; 0.3%), and construction (400; 0.6%).

Information sector job levels were unchanged for the month.

Trade, transportation, and utilities posted the largest declines in January, losing 1,700 jobs or -0.6%, with other services down 1,100 (-1.7%) and financial activities falling by 100 (-0.1%).

Four sectors—professional and business services, construction, education and health services, and trade, transportation, and utilities—have recovered all COVID losses and are in growth mode.

Four of the state’s 10 main industry sectors have recovered all COVID job losses and are in growth mode.

Leisure and hospitality has recovered 95% of pandemic losses, followed by other services (91%), government (89%), manufacturing (82%), and information (54%).

Employment in financial activities, which lost 2,800 jobs in March and April of 2020, has declined by another 2,300 positions since then.

Four of Connecticut’s six major labor market areas posted gains in January, led by Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, which added 1,700 jobs (0.3%).

Norwich-New London-Westerly added 900 positions (0.7%), followed by New Haven (900; 0.3%), and Waterbury (200; 0.3%).

Danbury lost 400 jobs (-0.5%), with Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk losing 300 (-0.1%).


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