Although some Massachusetts employment sectors have been hit hard during the recession (retail and financial services sectors continued to lose jobs), the state's unemployment rate slipped slightly for the second consecutive month. On December 17, the state Executive Office of Workforce Development announced that the unemployment rate fell to 8.8 percent in November, down from 8.9 percent the previous month.
Getting back to the retail giant, it will be interesting to see how many former Wal-Mart employees across the state will return to their jobs with the giant retailer—will it further affect the unemployment rate?
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And it will also be interesting to keep tabs on Wal-Mart's wage and hour lawsuits; after all, this isn't the first time it has violated the Massachusetts Employment Law. The state attorney investigated Wal-Mart after employees reported that they were required to work through their meal breaks, only taking breaks after working six or more hours, and even cutting their breaks short. In September Wal-Mart paid $3 million to settle an investigation of violations of state meal-break policies.