New Jersey employment gains continue; unemployment rate rises to 5.2%

New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development figures for January show a continuance in the upward trend, according to data released Monday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

New Jersey’s unemployment rate rose by 0.1 percentage point, to 5.2%, as more residents entered the labor market in search of employment. While this marked the 14th straight month of job growth, the January increase was the smallest since August.

In all, 8,300 jobs were added over the month of January, reaching a seasonally adjusted level of 4,125,100. The state has now regained 85.9% of the jobs lost in March and April 2020 due to the pandemic.

In January, employment gains were recorded in trade, transportation, and utilities (+4,400), financial activities (+3,000), construction (+600), other services (+500) and leisure and hospitality (+400). Industry sectors that recorded over-the-month job losses include professional and business services (-1,200), education and health services (-600), manufacturing (-400) and information (-200). Public sector employment was higher by 1,800, with the gain occurring primarily at the local level (+1,700).