Unemployment Rate at 5.5% for July

August 18, 2014

For Immediate Release: Monday, August 18, 2014
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, (207) 287-2531

Share of Mainers working still above national average

AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage released a statement today about the 5.5% unemployment rate for July, which is down from 6.7% in July 2013 and is the lowest since August 2008. Maine’s unemployment rate is far below the U.S. unemployment rate of 6.2 percent.

The employment-to-population ratio—the share of Maine’s population that is employed and a better indicator of economic recovery—is 61.4%. July was the 82nd consecutive month Maine’s employment-to-population ratio was above the national average.

"Since we took office, almost 22,000 private-sector jobs have been created in Maine," said Governor LePage. "There are still plenty of jobs available, including almost 7,400 posted on the Maine Job Bank. Combined with our efforts to move individuals from welfare to work, there are more opportunities than ever for Mainers to get good-paying jobs that will improve the quality of life for them and their families."

The number of private-sector jobs is up 8,400 from a year ago in July 2013. The number of government jobs is down 1,300. Government accounted for only 16.3 percent of nonfarm jobs in June and July, its lowest share since May 1999.

“We have made progress, but we cannot stop now. Maine is still facing economic challenges from decades of failed policies from the past,” said Governor LePage. “Our high energy costs, which are a result of the policies of the past two administrations, are driving business away from Maine. Our aging population is a difficult factor we must overcome to continue with economic and job growth. That’s why we must keep working to bring more companies with good-paying jobs to our state, which will help keep more young people and families here. We must continue transforming Maine from a high-tax state with a large welfare population to a low-tax, business-friendly state with lower energy costs to attract companies that will create good-paying career jobs for Maine families.”