Wethersfield, CT – Connecticut Department of Labor (CTDOL) Interim Commissioner Danté Bartolomeo on Thursday announced that the state’s unemployment rate dropped to an estimated 7.3% in July from the revised 7.7% rate in June. With the three-month average unemployment rate below 8.0%, Connecticut is anticipated to trigger off the federal High Extended Benefits program. The state added an estimated 9,400 jobs in July and has regained 67% of the jobs lost during the pandemic lockdown in March and April 2020.
Unemployment weekly filings have dropped week over week since late February 2021 and continue to trend down. Currently, Connecticut has about 130,000 weekly filers, still considerably higher than the pre-pandemic 40,000 weekly filers, but down from 220,000 in February 2021. Peak weekly filers numbered nearly 400,000 in May 2020.
Interim Commissioner Bartolomeo said, “Sixteen months after a global pandemic created an unprecedented economic lockdown, Connecticut’s economy and job market are showing strong and consistent signs of recovery. As childcare capacity increases, schools go back into session, and vaccinations continue, more workers are entering the job market—some are finding higher-paying jobs, some are making major career changes. It’s a job seeker’s market and the timing works well with the end of federal programs approaching on September 4.”
Economist Patrick Flaherty, Director of the CTDOL Office of Research said, “Jobs are up nearly 30,000 since December while the unemployment rate has fallen 1.2% points in just five months. This recession was caused by a public health crisis; the economic recovery we are seeing is faster than usual because the public health crisis recovery is well underway. Some industries that were hit hardest by the pandemic, such as Accommodation and Food Services and Retail Trade have now recovered more than 70% of the jobs lost due to the Covid shutdown. We have work ahead of us, but this is good progress.”
TOPLINE POINTS FROM THE REPORT:
July marks 7 consecutive months of job gains and the largest monthly gain in 2021.
Connecticut has recovered 196,400 of the 292,400 jobs lost during March-April 2020.
Seven of 10 supersectors gained employment and three declined in July.