Updated March 24 at 12:29am

R.I. jobless rate tops in U.S. despite drop in December


WASHINGTON – Rhode Island had the highest jobless rate among the New England states in December and was tied with Nevada for the highest rate in the nation at 10.2 percent. Still, the Ocean State’s unemployment rate fell to stand at its lowest point since March 2009.

New England’s unemployment rate was unchanged from November at 7.3 percent in December, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Friday.

Year over year, New England’s seasonally adjusted unemployment was 0.1 percentage points higher than the 7.2 percent posted in December 2011.

For the entire Northeast region – which includes the six New England states as well as New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania – the unemployment rate held at 8.1 percent in December, the same as in November, but an increase of 0.1 percentage points year over year from December 2011.

Nationally, the unemployment rate held steady from November to December at 7.8 percent, but fell 0.7 percentage points year over year from the 8.5 percent reported in December 2011.

From November to December, Rhode Island’s unemployment rate fell to 10.2 percent, the lowest unemployment rate for the Ocean State since March 2009. Year over year, Rhode Island’s jobless rate dropped 0.8 percentage points from the 11 percent reported in December 2011.

From November to December, the Massachusetts unemployment rate rose 0.1 percentage points to 6.7 percent, seasonally adjusted. Year over year, the Bay State saw a 0.2 percentage point drop from December 2011 to December 2012.


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