Modest Job Gains, State Still Lags Neighbors, U.S.
Connecticut added 2,200 jobs in April, recording gains for a third consecutive month after a terrible start to the year.
In releasing its April employment figures, the state Department of Labor also revised down its March numbers by 900 to 4,000 new jobs. The state lost a net 2,300 jobs through the first four months of 2014.
“The April labor report was moderately positive for Connecticut,” said CBIA economist Pete Gioia.
He noted that six of the 10 major industry sectors in the state added jobs while three of the six labor market areas posted gains.
“Overall, we added 10,800 private sector jobs year over year,” added Gioia.
However, Gioia said Connecticut is still behind in terms of economic growth as Massachusetts, New York, and the U.S. overall already recovered all jobs lost in the 2008-2010 recession.
“Even with the higher pace of job recovery that we’ve seen in the last year, it takes us 34 months to achieve full employment,” he said. “That’s February of 2017.”
The state’s unemployment rate fell one-tenth of a point to 6.9%. A year ago, unemployment in the state stood at 7.8%. The national unemployment rate is 6.3%.
Over the 50 months since the recession ended, Connecticut has regained 55.7% of the 119,100 jobs lost during the economic downturn.
Connecticut’s slow economic recovery continues to be a major issue for voters.
A Quinnipiac Poll released on May 9 showed that more than two-thirds of voters rate the state’s economy as “not so good” or “poor” [see above figure], while just 21% believed the economy was improving.
Over half of those surveyed (56%) said they were dissatisfied with “the way things were going in Connecticut.”
Approval ratings for the state legislature continued their anemic pattern, with just 35% of voters saying they approved of lawmakers’ overall job performance.
“That shows that we still have a long way to go in Connecticut’s economic recovery,” Gioia said.
Trade, transportation, and utilities led the six sectors that gained jobs in April, adding 800 positions.
The leisure and hospitality and education sectors gained 700 jobs, followed by financial activities (500). The construction and mining and government sectors both added 400 positions.
Professional and business services shed 600 positions, followed by other services (-400); manufacturing (-200); and information (-100).
Three of the six labor market areas posted gains, led by Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk with 1,500 new jobs. New Haven added 600 positions and Norwich-New London 500.
Danbury lost 500 jobs, followed by Hartford (-400) and Waterbury (-200)
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