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May's Dept. Of Labor Figures Show A Glimmer Of Good News

While most of the news about the number of jobs lost in Maine has been troubling, May figures from the Department of Labor (DOL) showed a small glimmer of good news.

DOL Economist Glenn Mills says Maine was hammered by the pandemic during March and April, losing nearly 105,000 jobs. But in May some 14,000 Mainers who lost their jobs went back to work.

Mills says some economic sectors are doing better than others: “Manufacturing had a pretty sharp job loss from February to April, but a really healthy rebound in May. It gained back about half of what it had lost.”

Mills says the hardest-hit sectors were hospitality, health care and retail trade.

“We had a little bit of job loss in March, tremendous job loss in April. Between the two months we lost almost 105,000 jobs from about 630,000 jobs, and then in May we had a rebound of about 14,000 jobs.”

The jobs lost in March and April represent only a fraction of the 630,000 jobs in the state.

Journalist Mal Leary spearheads Maine Public's news coverage of politics and government and is based at the State House.