New York added 23,600 private sector jobs in January, but the state's unemployment rate increased slightly, according to statistics released Thursday by the state Department of Labor. 

The state's unemployment rate from December to January increased from 4.1% to 4.2%, state officials said. 

Labor participation has increased slightly at the same time from December to January, growing from 60.4% to 60.5%. 

New York state has struggled to regain all of the jobs lost in the immediate aftermath of orders to close public gathering places and businesses at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic three years ago. 

Overall, the national economy grew jobs at the same rate as New York in January, 0.3%. The national unemployment rate in January stood lower than New York at 3.4%. 

The jobs numbers for New York come amid ongoing concerns over a potential downturn and economic recession as the Federal Reserve seeks to continue to combat inflation by raising interest rates. 

The U.S. Department of Labor reported on Thursday jobless claims increased at their highest rate in five months.