Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning


Labor Force and Industry Developments - Maryland Monthly Labor Review - January 2010


Labor market conditions were relatively low key in January. Maryland’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was little changed over-the-month, rising slightly from December’s revised rate of 7.4 percent to 7.5 percent in January, according to figures released by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation.

Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates - Maryland and US - January 2009 through January 2010
Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates
Maryland and US
January 2009 through January 2010
Jan 09 6.1% 7.7%
Feb 6.4% 8.2%
Mar 6.7% 8.6%
Apr 6.9% 8.9%
May 7.0% 9.4%
June 7.1% 9.5%
July 7.2% 9.4%
Aug 7.2% 9.7%
Sept 7.3% 9.8%
Oct 7.3% 10.1%
Nov 7.3% 10.0%
Dec 7.4% 10.0%
Jan 10 7.5% 9.7%

Nationally, unemployment, while remaining more then two full percentage points above that of Maryland, fell to 9.7 percent in January -- its first time below double-digits since last September.

During January, losses were reported in select industries, resulting in an overall decline of 2,500 from business payrolls. There were, however, some positive movements in January’s jobs report. Employment in natural resources, mining and construction, an industry dominated by construction, rose for the first time since the economic downturn began. Elsewhere on private sector payrolls, January job totals were notably higher in retail trade, administrative and support services, and leisure and hospitality industries while, in the public sector, the number of jobs on federal payrolls advanced.

While subtle signs are beginning to emerge suggesting that the economy is on the mend, recouping job losses, creating new opportunities and reducing unemployment will be particularly challenging given the depth of the recession. Maryland employers have shed nearly 120,000 jobs from their payrolls since December 2007 and the number of out-of-work residents, currently at 222,433, is more than double pre-recession levels.

In order for short-term gains in Maryland’s job market to develop into full recovery, consistent and sustained job creation must first occur at the national level.

At the local level, non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rates spanned a wide range in January. Unemployment rates in Howard and Montgomery counties, at 6.0 percent and 6.2 percent, respectively were at the lower end of the range. Eleven local jurisdictions reported jobless rates in the double-digits. Rates in Somerset, Dorchester and Worcester counties were among the highest at 12.2 percent, 12.8 percent and 18.5 percent, respectively.

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