Employment growth in most upstate New York regions remained weak during the year ending in February, according to the latest monthly state Department of Labor jobs report.
The state as a whole gained 122,700 private sector jobs on a year-over-year basis — a 1.6 percent growth rate, compared to the preliminary estimate of 2.2 percent for the nation as a whole in February. In line with a longer-term trend, virtually all net job growth was measured downstate, mainly in New York City, where the 104,300 additional private jobs represented a growth rate of 2.9 percent.
Upstate, the national and statewide rates were exceeded only by two small metro areas, Ithaca and Watertown-Fort Drum. Among larger upstate metros, Rochester lost jobs, Syracuse had no change and Buffalo-Niagara Falls grew by a mediocre 0.9 percent rate. Elmira also showed a year-over-year decline. Figures for Albany-Schenectady-Troy were down but not final “due to a reporting error,” NYSDOL said.