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Maui County halves jobless rate to 6.3% in span of year

The Maui News

Maui County cut its unemployment rate by more than half from December 2020 to December 2021, going from 13.4 percent to 6.3 percent as the economy continued to improve amid the pandemic.

Maui island’s unemployment was at 6.3 percent last month, down from 13.8 percent in December 2020, according to state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism data released Monday. Lanai’s unemployment also declined from 5.9 percent in December 2020 to 4.8 percent last month.

Molokai, however, was the only island in the state to see an increase in jobless rates from the previous year, going from 6.4 percent in December 2020 to 9.1 percent last month.

Hawaii’s unemployment rate overall was 4.9 percent last month, down from 9.3 percent in December 2020. Kauai County had the highest jobless rate in the state at 6.7 percent, followed by Maui County at 6.3 percent, Hawaii County at 4.9 percent and Honolulu County at 4.6 percent.

The rates were not seasonally adjusted, meaning they did not take into account the hiring and layoff patterns that go along with the winter holiday and summer vacation seasons.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the state was 5.7 percent last month, down from 10.3 percent in December 2020. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 3.9 percent last month, down from 6.7 percent a year ago.

Seasonally adjusted rates by county were not available.

Overall, Hawaii’s labor force decreased in size, going from 655,600 in December 2020 to 647,450 last month. However, the number of employed people rose from 588,150 to 610,350 over the same time span, while unemployed people declined from 67,400 to 37,050.

Unemployment in Maui County in December ticked slightly downward from November, when the nonseasonally adjusted rate was 7 percent, down from 16.4 percent in November 2020. Rates were 6.8 percent on Maui island (down from 16.4 percent), 11.9 percent on Molokai (up from 6.6 percent) and 6.2 percent Lanai (down from 29.3 percent).

Hawaii’s nonseasonally adjusted unemployment rate for November as 5.4 percent; the seasonally adjusted rate was 6 percent. Across the U.S., the seasonally adjusted rate was 4.2 percent.

A total of 646,450 people made up the labor force in November, down from 655,900 in November 2020. The number of employed people rose from 588,350 to 608,000, while the number of unemployed people fell from 67,550 to 38,450.

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