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February 9, 2012 | last updated February 9, 2012 11:00 am

Report: Maine ranks first in 2011 job loss

A recent analysis by the Maine Center for Economic Policy claims Maine lost the most jobs per capita of any state in the nation in 2011. The Maine Department of Labor, however, is disputing those findings, saying the federal data the center used is flawed.

According to the center's report, only six states lost jobs in 2011, and, at -1.2%, Maine's loss was the greatest. The state lost 7,200 jobs per capita, with the construction industry losing 1,600 jobs and state and local government losing 4,200 jobs. Only two sectors -- education and health services, and financial -- gained jobs.

The analysis used data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Maine DOL Spokesman Adam Fisher told the Bangor Daily News that the BLS' early 2011 estimates, which showed a large gain in January and then a large drop in February, are not accurate compared with actual payroll data. He said Glenn Mills, director of economic research at the DOL's Center for Workforce Research & Information, informed the BLS of its potentially inaccurate data. The BLS is expected to revise its estimates in March.

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