March 29, 2013

Maine jobless rate unchanged at 7.3%

By Jessica Hall
Staff Writer

AUGUSTA — Maine's unemployment rate remained flat at 7.3 percent in February, unchanged from January and the year-ago period, according to the state Department of Labor.

Maine's unemployment rate was below the national unemployment rate of 7.7 percent in February, which was down from 7.9 percent in January and 8.3 percent a year ago.

The unemployment rate for New England was 7.0 percent, ranging from a low of 4.4 percent in Vermont and a high of 9.4 percent in Rhode Island.

The non-seasonally adjusted statewide unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in February, down from 8.5 percent one year ago. The rates ranged from 6.3 percent in Cumberland County to 12.9 percent in Washington County. Unemployment rates tend to be lower than the statewide average in the southern and central counties, and higher than average in northern counties.

In the major metropolitan areas, the unemployment rate was below the statewide average: 6.7 percent in Portland-South Portland-Biddeford, 7.6 percent in Bangor, and 7.8 percent in Lewiston-Auburn.

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