State unemployment drops to lowest level since 2008

| 21 May 2014 | 11:48

    New Jersey’s unemployment rate dropped to 6.9 percent in April, its lowest level since the fall of 2008, as Garden State employers added 4,500 workers to their payrolls, according to preliminary data released by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.

    The state’s unemployment rate fell by 0.3 percentage points over the month, from March’s 7.2 percent to 6.9 percent in April, as job gains were recorded in both the private (+3,300) and public (+1,200) sectors of the state’s economy to reach a seasonally adjusted level of 3,932,400, as measured by the BLS through its monthly employer survey. Since February 2010, the recessionary low point for private-sector employment, private-sector employment has increased by 125,700 jobs.

    “The strong gain in resident employment and the increase in the labor force, along with the drop in the unemployment rate, indicates that the labor market continues to heal. We appear to be starting some progress on the job front after the recent soft months,” said Charles Steindel, chief economist for the New Jersey Department of Treasury.