Joblessness rose in New York City, was flat in New York State, and went down in New Jersey last month.
An analysis by the firm Eastern Consolidated calls the loss of almost nine thousand jobs in New York City "somewhat unsettling" as hiring nationwide has been improving in recent months.
Restaurants and financial services had the most layoffs. The city's jobless rate rose a tenth of a percent to 9 percent.
That's the same rate for New Jersey, but there, it's good news. That's because it's the lowest unemployment level in over a year and a half.
New York State's unemployment rate held steady at eight percent in December.
Nationally, the number of people seeking unemployment benefits plummeted last week to 352,000, the fewest since April 2008. The decline added to recent evidence that the job market is strengthening.
With the Associated Press