Rhode Island’s economy keeps chugging along, with an unemployment rate of 4.1 percent in May, which means the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment was below the national rate of 4.3 percent.
The number of employed residents was 532,700, up 1,100 from the April figure of 531,600, according to data released by the R.I. Department of Labor and Training.
The job growth was led by hotels, restaurants and food services, which added 1,000 positions in May. That sector if up 1,700 jobs since last year. Construction hiring, which has meant 1,600 jobs in 2017, was also up.
Rhode Island’s unemployment rate is down substantially from May, 2016, when the rate was 5.4 percent. The data showed the state adding 7,100 jobs since May, 2016.
Gov. Gina Raimondo touted the job numbers, saying the state’s unemployment rate is now the lowest since January 2001. ``The investments we have made in job training, education, infrastructure and economic development are working,’’ the governor said in a statement.
She said one of every three new jobs created in Rhode Island over the last year have been in construction.