Maine Unemployment Rate 7.4 Percent in October Bookmark and Share

November 20, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2012 Contact: Glenn Mills 207-621-5192

State Labor Commissioner Jeanne Paquette released October workforce estimates for Maine.

Seasonally Adjusted Statewide Data Survey of Households - The preliminary estimate of the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Maine was 7.4 percent in October, down slightly from 7.6 percent in September and little changed from 7.3 percent one year ago. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated 52,700 were unemployed, up 1,500 over the year. The U.S. unemployment rate was estimated at 7.9 percent, little changed from 7.8 percent in September and down from 8.9 percent one year ago.

Labor force participation and the share of the population that is employed remained well above the national average in October. This was the 61st consecutive month Maine had a higher employment to population ratio than the nation.

The October unemployment rate for New England was 7.4 percent; rates in other states were 5.7 percent in New Hampshire, 5.5 percent in Vermont, 6.6 percent in Massachusetts, 10.4 percent in Rhode Island and 9.0 percent in Connecticut.

Survey of Employer Payrolls – Preliminary estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate there were 595,300 nonfarm payroll jobs in October, little changed (-300) from the revised September estimate. The estimate of U.S. nonfarm payroll jobs was up 171,000. Estimates since June 2011 continue to be volatile from month to month, generally indicating a relatively flat trend. The lagging complete count of jobs collected through employer unemployment insurance tax filings indicates there was an upward trend in jobs in the 12 months through June 2012. The complete count will replace the estimates when annual revisions occur in March (see nearby chart).

Not Seasonally Adjusted Substate Data The not seasonally adjusted statewide unemployment rate was 6.7 percent in October, unchanged from one year ago. Not seasonally adjusted rates ranged from 5.5 percent in Cumberland County to 9.6 percent in Washington County. Rates tended to be lower than the statewide average in southern and coastal counties and higher than average in northern and rim counties. Among metro areas, the unemployment rate was below the statewide average in Portland-South Portland-Biddeford (5.5 percent) and close to the average in Bangor (6.6 percent) and Lewiston-Auburn (6.8 percent).

This release is available at Detailed labor force and unemployment data for the state, counties, and 31 labor market areas; nonfarm jobs data for the state and the three metropolitan areas; and much more data is available at

November data is scheduled for release December 21.