The May employment report brought much-needed positive news for Connecticut's economy, with employers adding 6,700 jobs across a range of industry sectors.

That's a major rebound from the previous month, even after the state Department of Labor revised April's numbers down another 1,600 jobs for a total loss of 3,100.

New England Job Growth"May was very good news," said CBIA economist Pete Gioia.

"We saw a net gain of 6,700 and an increase in the labor force—which is also good news."

Gioia did note several concerns with the May jobs report, issues he said must be a major focus during ongoing state budget negotiations.

"Our unemployment rate of 4.9% is still the highest in New England," Gioia said.

"And we're one of only two states in the region yet to recover all jobs lost during the 2008-2010 recession."

Recession Recovery

Connecticut has recovered 79% of the 119,100 jobs lost during the recession.

The U.S. has recovered 192%, while Massachusetts' economy continues to expand, leading the region with a recovery rate above 300%.

Connecticut employers now have added 11,000 jobs (0.7%) since May 2016, while the U.S. has an average job growth rate of 1.6%.

Connecticut's year-over-year job growth is 0.7%, compared with 1.2% in New England and 1.6% across the U.S.
New England's year-over-year job growth rate is 1.2%. Massachusetts' nonfarm employment grew 1.6% in the last 12 months.

"As lawmakers discuss the state's next two-year budget, it's critical that they create a predictable and stable fiscal environment for job creators to feel confident to invest in Connecticut," Gioia said.

"We need a state budget that will build on May's momentum."

Industry Sectors, Labor Markets

Seven of the state's 10 industry sectors added jobs during May, led by education and health services, which gained 3,200 positions and is up 6,100 positions (1.9%) over the last 12 months.

Leisure and hospitality and professional and business services both gained 1,600 jobs, followed by financial activities (800), government (700), other services (500), and trade, transportation, and utilities (300).

Manufacturing led all losing sectors, shedding 900 jobs in May. That sector is down just 300 jobs (-0.2%) year-over-year.

After adding 2,600 jobs in April, construction and mining lost 600 positions in May, while information lost 500.

Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk led all regional labor market areas last month with 3,700 new jobs, followed by Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford (2,700), New Haven (2,200), and Waterbury (500).

Norwich-New London-Westerly lost 1,000 jobs and Danbury shed 600 positions.