BOSTON – The unemployment rate for New England declined 0.2 percentage points in November to a seasonally adjusted 6.9 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Thursday.
The New England jobless rate came in just below the national average of 7 percent for the month, which had dropped 0.3 percentage points compared with October.
Year over year, the unemployment rate in New England fell 0.3 percentage points from 7.2 percent, while the national rate fell 0.8 percentage points during the same 12-month period.
Of the six New England states, Vermont had the lowest jobless rate in November at 4.4 percent, seasonally adjusted, followed by New Hampshire at 5.1 percent and Maine at 6.4 percent. Over the last year, Maine was the only New England state to record a statistically significant unemployment rate change, down 0.8 percentage point.
Massachusetts (7.1 percent), Connecticut (7.6 percent) and Rhode Island (9 percent) each reported November jobless rates above both the regional and national average. Rhode Island’s November rate tied with Nevada for the highest in the country, and November was also the first time since 2007 that Massachusetts recorded an unemployment rate higher than the national average.
In Rhode Island in November, the civilian labor force shrank 2.13 percent year over year, meaning there were 12,000 fewer people in the Ocean State either employed or looking for work in the 12 months ended Nov. 30, according to the BLS report.
The Massachusetts labor force increased 0.1 percent over the year, adding 3,800 people.
The New England region as a whole saw its civilian labor force shrink year over year by 0.49 percent, or 37,500.
Of the nine geographic divisions in the U.S., the Pacific division reported the highest jobless rate at 8 percent, and the West North Central division again registered the lowest rate at 4.9 percent.
Of the four regions in the U.S., the Northeast region – which includes the six New England states as well as New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania – had a jobless rate of 7.3 percent in November, a 0.3 percentage point decrease from October, and a 0.7 percentage point drop from November 2012.