We all know that times are tough right now in this country. Do any of you fellow Massachusetts residents have a friend or family member who is currently out of work? Perhaps you're currently looking for work.

The unemployment rate is sky-high, not just in Massachusetts, but across the country. The jobless numbers are not as high as they were during the pandemic, but they're up there nonetheless.

Recently, Stacker took a look at the numbers and came up with a very interesting report on the unemployed here in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The counties in the Bay State with the highest unemployment rates just might surprise you.

According to Stacker, the last recession before the pandemic, from 2007 through 2009, saw unemployment rates zoom up to 10% and took years to recover from. As bad as things seem, however, as of January 2024 the national unemployment rate remains relatively low at 3.7%. That's only up slightly from January 2023.

Exactly Which 5 Counties In Massachusetts Have The Highest Unemployment Rates?

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5. Bristol County

The county that houses such cities as New Bedford, Fall River, and Attleboro had, according to Stacker, a December unemployment rate of 4.1%. Out of a labor force of almost 300,000 people, over 12,000 were unemployed.

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4. Hampden County

With several well-populated cities and towns such as Westfield, Springfield, and Chicopee, Hampden County is by far the most populated county in western Massachusetts. With a labor force of approximately 220,000 people, just under 10,000 are unemployed leading to an unemployment rate of 4.4%

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3. Barnstable County

Barnstable County is home to Falmouth, Chatham, Provincetown, and other great cities right on the water (or close to it!). Out of a labor force of approximately 108,000 people, over 5,000 are unemployed leading to an unemployment rate of 4.9%.

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2. Dukes County

Dukes County has one of the smallest populations in the Bay State but has some of the most beautiful towns like Tisbury, West Tisbury, and Edgartown. Dukes County has an unemployment rate of 5.9%. With a total labor force of approximately 8,500 people, just over 500 are jobless.

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1. Nantucket County

Without question the least populated county in the Commonwealth. Out of a labor force of approximately 7,500 people, over 600 are unemployed. That leads to an unemployment rate of 8.6%

But What About Berkshire County?

I'm so glad you asked...

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6. Berkshire County

The Beautiful Berkshires just missed the top 5 coming in with the 6th highest unemployment rate in Massachusetts. With a labor force of just over 60,350 people, approximately 2,300 are unemployed leading to a rate of 3.8%.

Visit Stacker's website here for the full lowdown, stats, and facts.

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