State Jobless Rate Ticks Up to 3.6 Percent, Remains Below US

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts labor officials say the unemployment rate ticked up last month while the state added an estimated 200 jobs.

The office of Labor and Workforce Development said Thursday the state’s total unemployment rate stood at 3.6 percent in March, an increase from 3.4 percent in February.

It was the fourth consecutive monthly rise in the jobless rate, though it still stood nearly a full point below the 4.5 percent national rate in March.

State Labor Secretary Ronald Walker says there have been “substantial increases” in recent months in the state’s overall labor force, with new workers entering the job market.

Walker says the state is working on programs to help align employee job skills with those needed in the current economy.

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