Economic forecast sees growth for New England, but Connecticut lags behind

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BOSTON  — Taken as a whole the New England economy is expected to continue improving over the next two years, but experts say significant state-by-state disparities remain.

The New England Economic Partnership released its annual outlook on Tuesday during a conference at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

In its report, the group pointed to Massachusetts and New Hampshire as having the strongest economies in the region, as indicated by unemployment rates that are among the four lowest in the nation. But that could lead to constraints in the labor force that limit future growth in those states.

The economists say Maine and Vermont are troubled by “demographic factors and rural area economic stagnation.”

Connecticut and Rhode Island, meanwhile, are lagging behind the rest of the region in overall economic vitality.