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Business and Economy

Maine unemployment rate dips as state adds 3,600 jobs

Virus Outbreak Maine Unemployment
Robert F. Bukaty
/
AP file
A sign announces a coronavirus closure at a flower shop in Jay, Maine, Thursday, April 16, 2020.

Maine added 3,600 jobs last month.

The Maine Department of Labor reports that the state's unemployment rate fell to 3.6% in March — that's a drop from 4% in February. Over the last three months, some of the biggest job gains were in retail trade and leisure and hospitality, which were hit hard by the pandemic.

The state reports that wages also rose by nearly 6% across the private sector over the last year. Hourly earnings were up by more than 9% in education and health services, and 13% in the leisure and hospitality sector.

The state Labor Department reports that 24,800 people were unemployed in Maine last month — the lowest number in two years.