Through the highs of the real estate boom and the lows of the Great Reces­sion that fol­lowed, employ­ment in Mass­a­chu­setts never reached the peak it hit in Feb­ruary 2001, an era of wild-​​eyed opti­mism that ulti­mately ended in the col­lapse of the dot-​​com bubble in the tech­nology industry.

At least not until now.

Mass­a­chu­setts employ­ment hit a record high in March, with about 3.4 mil­lion people holding jobs.

This time, there is reason to think that the recovery could be a lasting one, said North­eastern Uni­ver­sity econ­o­mist Alan Clayton-​​Matthews.

We didn’t pass this [jobs] mile­stone because of an irra­tionally exu­berant bubble,” he said, “but because of steady growth that looks like it’s on a trend to continue.”

More than six years after the 2008 reces­sion, Massachusetts’s recovery has been marked by slowly improving unem­ploy­ment and con­sumer con­fi­dence. The state reported Thursday that unem­ploy­ment fell for the third month in a row to 6.3 per­cent in March from 7.1 per­cent in December. In recent years, the Mass­a­chu­setts rate has gen­er­ally been below the US average, which was 6.7 per­cent in March.

Read the article at The Boston Globe →