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Jobless Rate Remains Steady At 8% In Connecticut

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FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- Connecticut added 1,000 jobs in May and lower Fairfield County saw job growth, but the state's unemployment rate remained at 8 percent, according to statistics released last week by the state Department of Labor.

The Stamford-Norwalk area showed the largest job growth in the state, while the Danbury area saw a small decline, according to the statistics.

Connecticut has now gained jobs in four of the first five months of 2013, losing jobs only during the very snowy February.

The state’s unemployment rate has held steady at 8.0 percent for four consecutive months and down four-tenths of a percentage point from May 2012, when it was 8.4 percent. The national unemployment rate is currently 7.6 percent.

“With the exception of a storm-impacted February, Connecticut has been experiencing consistent job growth so far this year,” said Andy Condon, director of the Office of Research. “The upward turn in labor force participation, after 35 straight months of decline, may indicate increased confidence in labor market conditions. However, there are still headwinds ahead. Federal budget sequester cuts could hinder employment growth possibilities throughout the rest of 2013.”

Three of the six major Connecticut Labor Market Areas posted job gains this May while three showed losses. The New Haven LMA added 1,800 jobs. The Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk LMA, with 1,500 jobs, provided the most job growth. The Waterbury LMA with 100 jobs exhibited just a small increase.

The Norwich-New London LMA lost 2,100 jobs, the largest decline. The Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford LMA lost 800 jobs and the Danbury LMA lost 100 jobs.

Connecticut has recovered 58,600 positions or 48.3 percent of the 121,200 jobs that were lost in the state in the March 2008 to February 2010 employment downturn.

The state’s unemployment rate has not been this low since April 2009, when it was 7.9 percent.