Maine jobless rate up slightly in December

Posted Jan. 22, 2010, at 12:34 p.m.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine Labor Commissioner Laura Fortman says the state’s unemployment rate grew slightly in December to 8.3 percent.

That’s up 0.3 percent from a revised rate of 8.0 percent in November. Fortman says the number of jobless Mainers reached 58,300, up 12,000 from a year ago, when the unemployment rate was 6.5 percent.

The national unemployment rate was 10.0 percent, unchanged from November. The New England average was 9.0 percent.

Fortman says that among Maine’s three metropolitan areas, unemployment rates were 6.7 percent in Greater Portland, 7.3 percent in Greater Bangor and 8.5 percent in Lewiston-Auburn.