Weekly Jobless Claims Drop To Pre-Pandemic Levels In Maine

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Weekly claims for unemployment assistance have fallen to pre-pandemic levels in Maine.

The Maine Department of Labor said Thursday that about 3,400 people received an unemployment benefit payment during the week ending Oct. 16. The department said that represented a decrease of about 400 people from the previous week, and that weekly claims fell to their lowest level since November 2019.

The number of initial claims for state unemployment insurance also fell by about 200 claims to about 600. The number of initial claims for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance fell from about 100 to about 50.

Maine's unemployment rate for August, the most recent month for which statistics are available, was a little less than 5%. That was an increase of about a percentage point from August 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic.