Connecticut added 1,000 jobs in May, the third consecutive month of growth. However, the state's unemployment rate remained unchanged at a stubborn 8%.

The state posted job gains in four of the first five months of the year,  with blizzard-impacted February shedding 5,700 positions.

That's the best five-month start to any year since 2010, when the state's on-again-off-again recovery from recession began.

Norwich-New London Losses

“The May jobs report from the Department of Labor was a welcome bit of news,” says CBIA economist Pete Gioia.

“Year-over-year job growth now stands at 12,500 jobs, but there still is bad news in eastern Connecticut, with the Norwich/New London labor market area down 3,000 jobs year-over-year and 2,100 jobs from last month.

“For the rest of the state, it looks like we’re beginning to see some traction."

Headwinds Forecast

The state Department of Labor also sounded a note of caution in releasing its May report today.

"There are still headwinds ahead," said the Andy Condon, the agency's research director.

"Federal budget sequester cuts will retard employment growth possibilities throughout the rest of 2013."

Economic Issues

Other issues continue to dog the state's economic recovery, as illustrated by the latest Quinnipiac University poll released earlier this week. Among the poll's findings:

  • 75% of voters rate Connecticut's economy as poor or 'not so good.'
  • Just 20% believe the economy is improving; 31% say it's worsening and 48% say it's static.
  • 57% disapprove of the way the administration is managing the economy, while 35% approve.
  • 63% disapprove of the administration's handling of taxes and 55% disapprove of the way it handled the state budget.
  • 54% disapprove of how state lawmakers are doing their jobs.
  • 58% are dissatisfied with the direction the state is taking.

In the 39 months since the recession ended, Connecticut has recovered just 58,600 jobs, or less than half the total lost during the economic downturn.