Now here’s good news: The state’s unemployment rate last month fell to 7 percent, down from 7.3 percent and far below the national average of 8.6 percent.

The number of jobs created last month wasn’t spectacular. Only 5,000 new jobs were added to local payrolls. There’s also a lot of flux in the total labor-market stats, possibly distorting the unemployment rate to make it look statistically lower than it really is right now.

Still, this is great news, especially after everyone was predicting a guaranteed double-dip recession after this summer’s stock market follies. We’re not out of the woods yet. Europe could still drag everyone down. But it’s nonetheless heartening news heading into the holiday season.

File under: Early Christmas present

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