The latest jobs report released by the Connecticut Department of Labor has generally good news for June, says CBIA economist Pete Gioia, "but it also points to some of the problems with the volatility of the numbers we've been seeing.”
“Connecticut added a net 7,900 new jobs in June, which is certainly a very good performance,” he says--noting, however, that at the same time, revisions to the May numbers showed a loss of 4,000 jobs.
And in spite of a decline in the labor force, unemployment was up to 5.8% in June--still the highest in New England--compared to 5.7% the previous month.
“So you balance the two months together, and you're looking at about 2,000 jobs per month gained," Gioia said.
Who's Adding Jobs?
Year over year, Connecticut added 17,900 net new jobs, the vast majority of which (16,400) were in the private sector. Average earnings are also up $1.18 an hour, year over year.
In June, seven out of of 10 supersectors added jobs.
“Probably the most encouraging was that financial services, which has been lagging, added 2,200 net new jobs,” Gioia said.
Education and health services also made considerable gains last month with 2,000 jobs. Other services and government each added 1,900 jobs.
What’s troubling are the sectors that are losing jobs.
“We saw declines of 800 jobs in manufacturing and construction,” said Gioia, “two areas which are important to the state and should be up.”
Probably the most encouraging was that financial services, which has been lagging, added 2,200 net new jobs.
Still Playing Catchup
Two out of Connecticut's four labor market areas added jobs last month.
They were New Haven and Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk--not surprising, given that the sector with the greatest gains, financial services, has its strongest presence there.
Both the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford and smaller Norwich-New London-Westerly labor markets posted losses in June.
The total number of Connecticut jobs recovered since the recession now stands at 99,200--a recovery rate of 83.3%.
Compared to the U.S. recovery rate of 150%--and Massachusetts, with 250% of jobs recovered--Connecticut still has a lot of catching up to do.
To get to the point of employment expansion, the state needs to reach the 1,713,300 job mark--an increase of 19,000 jobs.