Lowest Unemployment in Decade Not Enough, Mayor Says

Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini.

May’s local unemployment numbers show 139 new jobs in Haverhill helped bring the city’s jobless rate below the 4 percent mark and, according to Mayor James J. Fiorentini, “the lowest Haverhill unemployment rate in a decade.”

Seasonally unadjusted figures released Tuesday by the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development (EOLWD) indicate a 3.9 percent unemployment rate in Haverhill for May, down one percentage point from an adjusted 4 percent in April. The rate for May is one percentage point above the state average. In a statement released Tuesday evening, Fiorentini said the numbers signal that Haverhill residents are finding work.

“These numbers show that Haverhill is on the move and going in the right direction. These numbers mean that more of our residents are finding work and more jobs are moving to our city,” Fiorentini said.

However, he added the numbers “do not tell the whole story” and more needs to be done to bring jobs to the city.

“We know that these numbers do not count discouraged workers who have dropped out of the workforce. We know that underemployed—people who once worked at places like Western Electric but are making less than they made a few years ago—are not counted in these numbers. We celebrate our progress but we still have a long way to go,” Fiorentini said.

The 139 new jobs come as the number of people in Haverhill with unemployment insurance claims dropped by 33, to 1,330 while the labor force grew by 106 to 34,479 in May.

In May, 2015, Haverhill’s jobless rate was 5.2 percent.

Elsewhere in WHAV’s listening area, Methuen’s unemployment rate also notched downward in May to 4.2 percent, compared with an adjusted 4.3 percent for April. Some smaller communties, including Andover and Groveland, had jobless rates tick upward. The labor department reported Andover’s unemployment rate climbed two percentage points in May to 3.1 percent, up from 2.9 percent in April. Groveland’s rate was up by one percentage point to 2.7 percent.

Among the Merrimack Valley’s other urban communities, Lawrence had the sharpest drop in unemployment, by three percentage points. However, its May rate of 7.2 percent remains the area’s highest. Lowell’s unemployment rate for May dropped one percentage point to 5.0 percent.

4 thoughts on “Lowest Unemployment in Decade Not Enough, Mayor Says

  1. Have to give the Mayor a bit of credit for not following the Obama mantra of ‘everything is beautiful, in it’s own way” theme. He realizes the numbers are bogus as our real unemployment numbers are around 20-25% . The economy is horrible as 2% GDP growth has been the norm for the longest period ever. The sad part is that most people believe the crap being put out by the White House.

  2. The Mass/gov website provides easily accessible information of jobs within each city in the state broken out by either private sector, local or state jobs. There is a lag in their system, with the most recent data provided being from the 2nd to 3rd quarters of 2015. The total number of people working in Haverhill per sector were as follows…

    Private Sector July: 17,831 September: 17,485 -346 jobs
    Local July: 1,499 September: 1,983 +484 jobs
    State July: 783 September: 893 +110 jobs

    The City of Haverhill added just under 500 jobs to it’s payroll!!! A total of almost 600 people living in Haverhill got jobs working in the public sector according to the most recent data available. During this time, private sector employers reported 346 fewer jobs in the city.

    The mayor says “jobs are moving to our city”…..and he’s right!! Government jobs that taxpayers get stuck paying for !!

  3. *numbers “do not tell the whole story” –

    Sure they do, they tell us the jobs being created suck, as The People of Massachusetts continue their 15 year journey into the economic abyss. There’s actually less people working in MA and Essex County than last year at this time, but why bother with details? However, if you’re a recipient of crony capitalism, things couldn’t be better.


    *I have a specialized request into Workforce so I can parse the data further by municipality. I won’t hold my breath though, as recent requests have either been made cost prohibitive (State wants tens-of-thousands of dollars), or I’m simply denied. I expect nothing less during “the most transparent Administration ever.”

  4. These numbers mean that more of our residents are finding work and more jobs are moving to our city,” Fiorentini said.

    Where is the proof that jobs are moving to Haverhill?