BOSTON (AP) — State labor officials say 2015 brought the strongest growth in jobs in Massachusetts in 15 years.

The Office of Labor and Workforce Development on Thursday announced monthly and full-year employment figures for the state. According to preliminary estimates from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, Massachusetts gained 7,100 jobs in December, while the state’s unemployment rate held steady at 4.7 percent.

READ MORE: Jamie Collins Activated From IR Ahead Of Patriots-Bills

Officials say the state picked up 73,800 jobs in 2015, the largest year-over-year gain since 2000. Those figures could be adjusted slightly once the December figures are finalized.

READ MORE: 'Everything Is On The Table': Boston Outlines Strategy To Combat COVID-19 Surge

The unemployment rate in Massachusetts remains below the U.S. rate, which stood at 5 percent in December.

MORE NEWS: Can I Still Transmit COVID After The Booster? Dr. Mallika Marshall Answers Your COVID Questions

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.