Cape Cod’s Unemployment Rates Skyrocket during Pandemic

Cape Cod’s unemployment ebbs and flows with the tourism season, peaking during the winter months.  This year, the unemployment rate showed a typical decline in March to 5.3% then skyrocketed to 21.5% in April, showing a significant impact on employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Barnstable County unemployment rate dipped slightly in May but remains higher than the state.

All five of Cape Cod’s top employment sectors: Health care and social assistance, accommodation and food services, retail trade, educational services, and construction, saw unemployment claims increase more than tenfold in May 2020 as compared to May 2019.

Unemployment rates are up nationally and statewide. Cape Cod towns are experiencing some of the highest unemployment rates in the Commonwealth.  In May, Cape town unemployment rates were higher than the state’s (16.3%), in all but one town.