Job declines in the Lower Hudson Valley slowed in February after a sharp decline in January, according to a state Department of Labor report.
An estimated 300 nonfarm jobs were lost in Westchester, Rockland and Orange counties, compared to a decline of 23,000 in January.
The government sector buoyed the employment data, with a gain of 1,000 jobs partially offsetting a loss of 1,300 jobs in the private sector. The government gains were attributed to local education, with a gain of 1,200 jobs.
The one-year regional trend remained positive, with 7,900 more jobs from February to February.
The strongest subsector growth in the three counties in February were educational services, 3,300, the aforementioned local government education, 1,200, and professional, scientific and technical services, 600.
The weakest subsectors were retail trade, down by 3,300, and accommodation and food services, down 700.
The broader Hudson Valley region – including Columbia, Dutchess, Putnam and Ulster counties – saw nonfarm employment increase by 3,100, or 0.3 percent, last month. Most of the growth, 2,400 jobs, was in the government sector.
The three-county region’s flat growth lagged behind the state, with a 0.9 percent increase and the nation with a 0.7 percent increase.
The state unemployment rate improved to 4.4 percent from 4.6 percent in January, according to preliminary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate is based on the current population survey and a monthly survey of 3,100 households.
The job count is based on a survey of 18,000 New York employers. The monthly estimates are preliminary and could be revised as more data become available.