New Jersey’s unemployment rate lowest since 2009

May 17, 2013

May 16, 2013 | Associated Press

New Jersey’s unemployment rate fell again in April to 8.7 percent, the lowest it’s been in four years, the state Department of Labor said Thursday.

The rate, which was 9 percent for March, declined for two opposing reasons. The encouraging: The seasonally adjusted number of people working in nonfarm jobs grew by 3,300. The discouraging: 4,400 people stopped looking for work in April.

Still, Gov. Chris Christie’s administration was touting the lower rate as a success. “The marked decline in unemployment over the last year mainly reflects the ongoing gains in jobs we are experiencing,” Charles Steindel, the state Treasury Department’s chief economist, said in a statement. He noted that 60,000 more New Jersey residents had jobs last month than in April 2012. That’s the biggest 12-month gain in seven years, he said.

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