Maine Unemployment Rate 6.4 Percent in November Bookmark and Share

December 20, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 20, 2013
Contact: Glenn Mills 207-621-5192

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

Seasonally Adjusted Statewide Data

Survey of Households - The preliminary seasonally adjusted unemployment rate estimate for Maine was 6.4 percent in November—the lowest figure since November 2008—down from 6.7 percent in October and 7.2 percent one year ago. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated 45,500 were unemployed, down 5,400 over the year.

The share of the population that is employed continued to gradually trend higher in Maine to 61.2 percent. The national employment to population ratio of 58.6 percent remained at about the same level it has been at for four years. November was the 74th consecutive month the share of employed population exceeded the national average.

The U.S. unemployment rate estimate was 7.0 percent, down from 7.3 percent in October and 7.8 percent one year ago. The New England estimate was 6.9 percent. Rates for other states were 5.1 percent in New Hampshire, 4.4 percent in Vermont, 7.1 percent in Massachusetts, 9.0 percent in Rhode Island, and 7.6 percent in Connecticut.

Survey of Employer Payrolls – The preliminary estimate of nonfarm payroll jobs was 601,100 in November, up 4,600 from one year ago according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The number of private sector jobs has gradually trended higher since 2010. BLS estimated U.S. nonfarm payroll jobs were up 203,000 in November.

Not Seasonally Adjusted Substate Data

The not seasonally adjusted statewide unemployment rate was 6.1 percent in November, down from 6.9 percent one year ago. Not seasonally adjusted rates ranged from 4.8 percent in Cumberland County to 9.2 percent in Piscataquis County. Rates tended to be lower than the statewide average in southern and central counties and higher than average in northern and rim counties.

The unemployment rate was below the statewide average in all three metropolitan areas: Portland-South Portland-Biddeford (5.0 percent), Bangor (5.6 percent) and Lewiston-Auburn (5.7 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 is available at .

December estimates will be released Tuesday, January 28.


  1. Preliminary unemployment estimates for Maine tend to move in a direction for several months and then reverse course. Those directional trends are largely driven by a smoothing procedure and may not indicate a change in underlying workforce conditions. Annual revisions (to be published in March) will eliminate those directional patterns. A chart illustrating preliminary estimates compared to annually revised figures for the last two years is available at .

  2. Nonfarm payroll jobs estimates tend to be volatile from month to month. Estimates for the period from October 2012 to September 2013 will be replaced with actual payroll data in March 2014. The job count is likely to show less volatility than preliminary estimates.