While Connecticut added an estimated 4,200 jobs in February, the state’s unchanged unemployment rate, the highest in New England, underscores ongoing economic concerns.

“This report continues to highlight the fact that the economy is priority number one,” said CBIA economist Pete Gioia.

“Elected officials have got to do all they can to encourage investment in Connecticut.

Stability at the Capitol attracts investment, and investment creates jobs.”

Gioia said policymakers should encourage investment in industries that create well-paying jobs with good benefits like manufacturing and financial services.

He added that the February report was a pleasant change from the disappointing final report for 2015, which showed Connecticut adding just 11,600 jobs for the year.

Connecticut has the highest unemployment rate in New England at 5.5%, nearly a full percentage point above the regional average of 4.6%.

The U.S. average unemployment rate for February was 4.9%.

The state has now recovered 77% of jobs lost during the recession. The private sector has seen more growth, regaining 91%.

According to the Department of Labor's report, the state gained 4,200 jobs in February, mostly in education and health services (5,300) and manufacturing (1,000).

The leisure and hospitality sector saw the largest drop (-1,400) followed by government (-800), and trade, transportation, and utilities (-700).

CBIA is Connecticut’s largest business organization, with thousands of member companies, small and large, representing a diverse range of industries from every part of the state. For more information, please email or call Meaghan MacDonald (860.244.1957).