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Maine Employment Change in 2020: Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Gabe, Todd and Diodato, William (2021): Maine Employment Change in 2020: Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

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The COVID-19 pandemic had large economic impacts worldwide. In Maine, year-over-year employment fell by 18 percent in April of 2020, and by 7.0 percent in December. Of Maine’s three metropolitan areas, Portland experienced the largest employment decrease between April 2019 and 2020. In December, employment in Bangor was 4.5 percent lower than twelve months earlier, compared with a 7.0 percent year-over-year employment decline in the Portland Metropolitan Area.

Maine’s Leisure and Hospitality sector had a 60 percent decline in year-over-year employment in April, and the sector’s employment was 29 percent lower than its 2019 level in December of 2020. Across Maine’s three metropolitan areas, retail employment returned to slightly above pre-pandemic levels over the last four months of 2020. By the end of 2020, retail employment in Portland hovered at about five percent above employment levels one year earlier.

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