N.J. labor market remains strong in May; job gains led by public sector hiring

New Jersey’s labor market remained healthy in May, with nonfarm employment increasing by 9,800 jobs to a seasonally adjusted level of 4.33 million. The unemployment rate increased 1 percentage point to 3.6%, according to preliminary estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Thursday.

The April unemployment rate remained at 3.5%.

The private sector added 5,900 jobs for the month, while the public sector experienced an increase of 3,900.

In May, four out of nine major private industry sectors recorded job growth. Sectors that reported employment increases were:

  • Education and health services (+5,400);
  • Other services (+1,700);
  • Leisure and hospitality (+1,500);
  • Financial activities (+600).

Sectors that recorded a loss were construction (-1,300), professional and business services (-1,000), manufacturing (-700) and trade, transportation and utilities (-300).

The information sector was unchanged for May. Month-over-month, the state’s public sector recorded a gain of 4,400 jobs.