Labor

Maine’s employment outlook largely unchanged in February

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Maine’s unemployment rate was 4 percent in February, a small change from January’s rate of 4.1 percent. The number of nonfarm wage and salary jobs available in the state grew by 3,200 in February.

Through February, the state’s three-month average unemployment rate was 4.1 percent.

February’s labor participation rate was 59.3 percent, unchanged from January. The state’s employment-to–population ratio changed slightly, up to 56.9 percent in February from 56.8 percent in January.

Healthcare and social assistance, leisure and hospitality, and construction were the three industries with the largest job gains between January and February. According to the Maine Department of Labor (DOL), nearly half of the 3,200 job increase between January and February was in leisure and hospitality. A further quarter “was in the combination of retail trade and state and local governments, primarily K-12 and higher education.”

The DOL also noted the gains in this sector were made as these sectors “continue to recover from some of the sharpest job losses at the beginning of the pandemic.”

Through February, the state’s three-month average of jobs was higher than the 2019 pre-pandemic average in the sectors of professional and business services, construction, manufacturing, educational services, and in the federal government. 

The three-month average was lower in the sectors of healthcare and social assistance, leisure and hospitality, information, retail trade, transportation, warehousing, utilities, and in state and local government.

About Katherine Revello

Katherine Revello is a reporter for The Maine Wire. She has degrees in journalism and political science from the University of Maine. Her writing has appeared in Reason, The Washington Examiner, and various other publications. Got news tips? Contact Katherine at krevello@mainepolicy.org.

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