Maui Business

Maui County Unemployment Remains at 7.5%

September 16, 2011, 10:07 AM HST
* Updated October 13, 12:51 PM
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By Sonia Isotov

The seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate for Maui County remains at 7.5% for August, down .7% from a year ago, according to the Hawaii State Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DLIR).

In the state, the DLIR has reported that seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for August was 6.2%, a 0.1% increase from 6.1% in July. There were 592,950 employed and 39,300 unemployed in August, for a total seasonally adjusted labor force of 632,250. Nationally, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.1% in August.

By islands in Maui County, the seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate remained at 7.3%, between August and July 2012, and dropped .7% from one year ago same period. Molokai dropped from 14.7% to 14% between August and July 2012, and dropped from 14.1% for the same period one year ago. For Lanai, unemployment dropped by .2% to 5.5% between August and July 2012, and 1.3% from a year ago same period.

According to the Establishment Survey, another measure of employment used by the government based on industry payroll employment figures, the DLIR announced the following seasonally adjusted job count figures by industry from August to July 2011:

  • Non-agricultural jobs decreased by 5,100 jobs or -0.9% to 590,200 jobs
  • The vast bulk of the job losses occurred in government (-5,700), more specifically in the Department of Education, with the contraction primarily due to a sharp staffing decline of the year-round school session, which until recently had historically not taken place in the July-August period
  • Among major private industry groups, job gains were experienced in the categories of: Education & Health Services (+600), Construction (+400), Financial Activities (+200), and Professional & Business Services (+200).
  • Among major private industry groups, job losses occurred in the categories of: Leisure & Hospitality (-300), Other Services (-300), and Trade, Transportation, & Utilities (-400)

In comparison with August 2010, total seasonally adjusted non-agricultural jobs have gone up by 8,400, or +1.4%, with the largest job expansion in the categories of Education & Health Services (+4,200), Professional & Business Services (+3,200), Leisure & Hospitality (+1,500), and Construction (+1,100).


“Seasonal adjustments” refers to the seasonal fluctuations in the number of employed and unemployed persons that reflect hiring (and layoffs) patterns that accompany regular events such as the winter holiday season and the summer vacation season. These variations make it difficult to tell whether month-to-month changes in employment and unemployment are due to normal seasonal patterns or to changing economic conditions. To deal with such problems, a statistical technique called “seasonal adjustment” is used. This technique uses the past history of the series to identify the seasonal movements and to calculate the size and direction of these movements. A seasonal adjustment factor is then developed and applied to the estimates to eliminate the effects of regular seasonal fluctuations on the data. When a statistical series has been seasonally adjusted, data for any month can be more meaningfully compared with data from any other month or with an annual average.

The DLIR only calculates national and the state seasonal adjustment figures. Therefore, seasonally adjusted figures are not available for Maui County, or any other county in the state of Hawaii.


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