Maryland Unemployment Rate Improves to 6.7 Percent, Lowest in Nearly Three Years


Maryland adds 3,100 jobs in December, fourth straight month of job growth

30,300 positions added since January, 25,600 in private sector

8,100 additional Marylanders working in December

BALTIMORE, MD (January 24, 2011) - Data released today by the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that Maryland added 3,100 jobs in December and the state's unemployment rate improved 0.2 percentage points - falling to 6.7 percent, the lowest unemployment rate since February 2009 and 1.8 percentage points better than the national average. December was the fourth straight month of job growth and the third straight month that the unemployment rate improved. Since the start of 2011, Maryland has added 30,300 jobs, including 25,600 in the private sector.

"December was another positive month in Maryland's recovery and a signal that the investments we have protected in skills development and education are helping put more Marylanders back to work," said Maryland Labor Secretary Alexander M. Sanchez. "Our unemployment rate fell to the lowest level in nearly three years, 8,100 additional Marylanders were working in December and 5,000 fewer neighbors were unemployed. While we added 3,100 jobs, we must remain focused to accelerate our job growth and recover the jobs that were lost during the national economic recession."

Maryland added jobs in a handful of industries, including 4,600 combined in State and Local Government, 2,300 in Education/Health Care/Social Services, 2,300 in Leisure and Hospitality and 200 in Information. In all, the state shed 1,200 private sector jobs.

Last week, Governor Martin O'Malley introduced a balanced, job-creating budget that protects Maryland's commitment to vital workforce training programs. The Governor's budget includes $64.8 million to revamp Maryland's workforce system, providing greater accessibility and training opportunities for unemployed Marylanders, New Americans and dislocated and low-wage workers. The budget also includes $33.6 million for adult education, literacy and correctional education programs and $1.25 million to support the YouthWorks Program in Baltimore City.

The Governor's FY 2013 budget proposal also includes a $3.6 billion capital budget with State infrastructure and construction spending that will support over 37,000 jobs and leverage an additional $1.4 billion in local government and private sector spending that will ultimately support nearly 15,000 Maryland jobs.

BLS will release January 2012 data on March 13, 2012 to provide time for annual benchmark revisions.

The Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation protects and empowers Marylanders by safeguarding workers, protecting consumers, providing a safety net and cultivating a thriving workforce that can meet the demands of Maryland’s dynamic economy. Follow DLLR on Twitter (@MD_DLLR) and Facebook.

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