TRENTON – New Jersey’s unemployment rate rose to 9.4 percent and 400 jobs were lost, according to May’s unemployment figures.
Like New Jersey, the national unemployment rate also rose by 0.1 percent to 9.1 percent. Preliminary estimates show that total nonfarm wage and salary employment moved slightly lower in May to 3.85 million jobs, as measured by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.
While seven of 10 industry super sectors recorded job gains over the month, overall employment at private-sector businesses was down by 700 jobs. Public sector jobs, however, rose by 300. So the net job loss was 400 in May.
“After several months of fairly strong increases, May’s results were obviously disappointing, though given the softer national numbers, not surprising. The gains in jobs in critical areas to the state’s economy, such as professional and business services and finance, suggest that the underlying trend is still positive,” said Charles Steindel, chief economist for the state Treasury Department, in a release.
In April, the state saw 12,500 jobs created. Since January, New Jersey total non-farm employment has increased by 30,100 jobs, according to labor stats.
The health services industry saw the largest job growth in May, with 3,200 jobs created.
Education saw 600 jobs cut.
Other super sectors with larger gains included professional and business services (+1,400) and finance (+800). Employment in professional and business services was boosted mainly by gains in the management of companies (+2,000) and professional and technical services (+1,300) components. Smaller over-the-month gains were registered in information (+500), other services (+500), and leisure and hospitality (+400).
However, those numbers were overwhelmed by losses in manufacturing (4,100 jobs lost), trade, transportation and utilities (2,000 less jobs) and construction (900 job cuts).
In manufacturing, losses occurred in both the nondurable (-2,700) and durable (-1,400) goods segments of the manufacturing sector while the majority of the loss in trade, transportation and utilities took place in the transportation, warehousing and distribution segment (-2,200).