Massachusetts unemployment rate rockets higher than 15% amid coronavirus crisis

The Massachusetts unemployment rate soared to 15.1% in April — up from about 2.8% in March — as the state’s efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus shuttered wide swaths of the economy, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary estimates indicate Massachusetts lost 623,000 jobs in April, with the vast majority — 597,100 — coming from the private sector.

One of the hardest hit areas was leisure and hospitality, which saw a 61% drop after losing 216,200 jobs. Construction also took a huge hit, falling more than 37% after shedding 60,000 jobs.

Other areas that experienced heavy job losses include trade, transportation, and utilities; education and health services; and other services and government.

No sector gained jobs.

The Massachusetts unemployment rate in April was four-tenths of a percentage point higher than the national rate of 14.7%.

Massachusetts was among the state hardest hit by the coronavirus.

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