Mixed Jobs Outlook

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WETHERSFIELD — Following workforce figures during the summer months that triggered concern, the numbers for September show a “slight improvement” for Connecticut’s job outlook, according to a release from the state Department of Labor’s Office of Research.

“An increase in jobs and a drop in the number of unemployed were positives for this month,” said Andy Condon, Office of Research director, in the release. “Unlike the last two months, changes in the employment and unemployment estimates have returned to more typical levels.”

However, Peter Gioia, an economist for the Connecticut Business & Industry Association, offers a more sobering point of view. While acknowledging that the September labor force figures are “the best news that we’ve seen in several months,” Gioia says they must “be tempered with the fact that the year-over-year gain in jobs has only been 1,900, which is incredibly weak. And, we also had several geographic sectors and several industry sectors lose jobs. So it’s really a mixed report — more positive than what we’ve seen, but still not great.”

Nonfarm payroll jobs grew by 2,000 in September. The unemployment rate for that month was 8.9 percent. Two of the six major labor market areas (Norwich-New London and Hartford-East Hartford) showed job increases. Among those registering decreases were New Haven (200 fewer positions) and Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk (400 fewer jobs). However, over the past year the Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk labor market area has been the leader in overall job growth.

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