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Queens Chronicle

UNEMPLOYMENT WATCH Good news: Workforce grew as jobless rate fell

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Posted: Thursday, January 2, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:23 am, Thu Jan 9, 2014.

The employment situation in Queens and elsewhere improved notably in November, the state Department of Labor said.

The unemployment rate in Queens fell to 7.2 percent from 7.8 percent in November 2012, the DOL announced in late December. Similar gains were seen citywide, where the jobless rate went from 8.6 percent to 8 percent year-to-year; statewide, where it went from 7.9 percent to 6.9 percent; and nationwide, where it went from 7.4 percent to 6.6 percent.

And unlike the case in some months, the rate did not fall because people were dropping out of the workforce and no longer being counted among the unemployed. All those jurisdictions also saw the workforce grow in November.

In Queens, 1,069,700 people were in the workforce in November, compared to 1,060,500 in October and 1,044,000 in November 2012. The improvement was reflected in all four other boroughs.

The state reported in mid-December that the city had added 30,200 private-sector jobs between October and November, better than usual. “Boosted by seasonal hiring by the FedEx and UPS, the transportation & warehousing sector gained 4,400 jobs in November when a gain of approximately 1,000 is more usual,” the DOL said. “As we move into the peak holiday season, retail hiring is running at an above-average pace through November, while [the] leisure and hospitality sector recovered from the weak showing in September and October, gaining 5,500 jobs when a slight decline is more usual.”

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