Connecticut employers added 500 jobs in October, marking 10 straight months of growth, as the state’s job market showed signs of slowing.
The Connecticut Department of Labor’s monthly report also revised September’s original job growth to 4,300 from 4,400.
Data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics released this week shows that Connecticut currently has 114,000 job openings, up 2.7% from the previous month.
CBIA President and CEO Chris DiPentima said the latest jobs report could “signal a slowdown in the job market — a pattern we’ve seen over the last two years.”
“While there is much positive to report, it is clear that employers are concerned about the possibility of an economic slowdown in the coming months,” he said.
Connecticut has recovered 89% of the historic 289,400 jobs lost to pandemic disruptions in March and April 2020, while the US recovery rate is 104%.
Maine leads the New England states with a 102% recovery rate, followed by New Hampshire (97%), Massachusetts (94%), Connecticut, Rhode Island (89%) and Vermont (79%).
Massachusetts leads the region in year-to-date job growth at 3.1%, four-tenths of a point above the national average of 2.7%.
Maine’s year-to-date job growth is 2.3%, followed by New Hampshire (2.1%), Connecticut (2%), Rhode Island (1.7%) and Vermont (1.3%).
Connecticut’s unemployment rate rose three-tenths of a point to 4.3% in October, the highest among New England states and the eighth-highest in the country. The national unemployment rate is 3.7%.
The state’s voluntary termination rate is the sixth lowest in the country, while its layoff and layoff rate is the lowest of any state.
DiPentima noted that while Connecticut has 114,000 job openings, 47,000 people have left the job market as of February 2020 — the number employed plus those actively looking for work.
“The labor shortage crisis remains the biggest obstacle to our economy realizing its full potential,” he said.
“Even if everyone who was unemployed was hired tomorrow, we would still have 32,600 unfilled positions.
“We must adopt all possible solutions to resolve this crisis – an issue which we expect will be a focus of the General Assembly when it meets in January.”
DiPentima highlighted CBIA’s policy recommendations on Transform Connecticut, which have the support of nearly half of the new state legislatures.
“These recommendations are a set of sensible solutions related to workforce training, housing, student loans, health care and immigration,” he said.
“We look forward to working with legislators and government to enhance and implement more pathways to rewarding careers and open doors of opportunity for all communities and residents.”
Sectors, labor markets
Five of Connecticut’s major industrial sectors posted growth in October, led by leisure and hospitality with 1,500 new jobs (1%).
The education and healthcare sectors added 1,400 jobs (0.4%), followed by manufacturing (800; 0.5%), information (100; 0.3%) and construction and mining (100; 0.2%), while other services remained unchanged.
The professional and business services sector lost 1,100 jobs (-0.5), followed by trade, transport and utilities (-900; -0.3%), financial activities (-800; -0.7%) and government (- 600;-0.3%).
Five of the state’s major job markets posted gains, led by the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford region with 2,100 new jobs (0.4%).
The Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk region added 1,700 jobs (0.4%), followed by New Haven (1,600; 0.5%), Waterbury (600; 0.9%) and Danbury (200; 0.3%) .
The Norwich-New London-Westerly region declined by 200 jobs (-0.2%).