Rhode Island Economy
3:55 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

RI Unemployment Rate Drops to 8.8 Percent

Rhode Island’s unemployment rate took a healthy drop in April.  But the state is still a long way from restoring all the jobs lost to the recession.

Rhode Island’s April unemployment rate was 8.8 percent. That’s three tenths of one percent lower than in March and the lowest rate in four-and-a-half years.  Charles Fogarty, director of the state Department of Labor and Training, attributes the decline to increased consumer confidence.

Rhode Island's unemployment rate spent more than three years in double digits.
Rhode Island's unemployment rate spent more than three years in double digits.

“Some of those businesses that were not able to hire in the past are now in a position to do that,” said Fogarty. “So we’ve gone from not being able to hire to being cautiously optimistic and in a position to hire. And we want to see that continue down the road.”

Fogarty said Rhode Island has regained 10,000 of the more than 39,000 jobs lost during the recession. The state’s unemployment rate hung in the double digits for three-and-a-half years.

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