A report issued by the Hampden County Career Centers found that hiring activity throughout the region slowed during March.
Finding work last month were 357 job seekers, a 28 percent drop from March of last year, when 497 unemployed job candidates found work.
The number of openings posted in the month fell to 457 in March from the previous year's 952, a 46 percent decrease.
The total number of job seekers served by the HCCC was up 14 percent to 5,414 from March 2012, when 5,337 people looked for work.
Unemployed job seekers jumped from 4,877 in March 2012 to 4,996 last month.
Top 10 Job Sectors Hiring (March 2013):
1. Health Care & Social Assistance
2. Administrative & Support
6. Accommodation & Food Services
7. Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
8. Transportation & Warehousing
10. (tie) Educational Services
10. (tie) Wholesale Trade
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