Central Mass Adds 5K New Jobs

The latest state employment report contained some good news for Central Massachusetts, which posted some of the highest annual job gains in the state.

The employment numbers showed the Worcester metropolitan area, essentially southern Worcester County, added an estimated 5,800 jobs from April 2014 to April 2015. The 2.1% increase was among the largest annual gains among the 15 areas of Massachusetts for which regional employment data is published.

Elsewhere in Central Massachusetts, the statistical area including Fitchburg, Leominster, and Gardner added 1,300 jobs during the last year, resulting in a 2.7% increase.

The Framingham area added 3,200 jobs, or 1%, according to the state Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development figures.

Not surprisingly, the more populous Boston-Cambridge area picked up the largest number of new jobs with 44,000 positions added during the period covered. But, the Boston area’s increase trailed Central Massachusetts on a percentage basis, working out to only a 1.7% jump in jobs.

The state employment numbers are not adjusted for seasonal variations in hiring patterns.

In separate figures tracking monthly employment changes from March to April this year, state officials reported Massachusetts gained 10,100 jobs. The monthly increase represented the eighth consecutive month of job gains in Massachusetts.

The resulting unemployment rate for April of 4.7% was the lowest it has been in Massachusetts in more than seven years.

From March to April, Central Massachusetts as a whole added nearly 6,000 new jobs, with Worcester accounting for the largest share of the total with 2,700 new jobs. With the bump in employment, Worcester’s jobless rate stands at 3.3%, down from 4.4% in April 2014.

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