The state’s unemployment rate for May continues a trend little changed for more than three years.

May’s preliminary rate of 3.3 percent is the same as one month ago and one year ago, according to a news release from the Maine Department of Labor. The state’s unemployment rate has remained below 4 percent for 41 consecutive months, extending a labor crunch for Maine businesses trying to hire.

Unemployment was lowest in Sagadahoc County (2.5 percent) and highest in Aroostook County (6.0 percent).

The unemployment rate was below the statewide average in Maine’s three metro areas: Portland-South Portland (2.6 percent), Lewiston-Auburn (3.1 percent) and Bangor (3.1 percent).

The U.S. unemployment rate of 3.6 percent for May was unchanged from April and down slightly from 3.8 percent one year ago.

In New England, Maine placed in the middle of the pack. The unemployment rate for New Hampshire was 2.4 percent, Vermont 2.1 percent, Massachusetts 3.0 percent, Rhode Island 3.6 percent and Connecticut 3.8 percent.


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