A woman walks by the former home of the Big Easy club on MarketStreet in Portland on Thursday Dec. 9, 2021. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

AUGUSTA, Maine  — The number of new jobless claims in Maine trended up last week.

In Maine, the number of initial claims grew by more than 400 to more than 1,250 in the week that ended Dec. 4, federal labor officials said. Initial claims grew from about 217,000 to 281,000 at the national level. Neither figure was seasonally adjusted.

Unemployment claims in Maine fell by more than 100 during the previous week, and remain well below last year’s levels. The state’s unemployment level of 4.9 percent in October was about the same in the previous year.

Nationally, the jobs picture has been mixed. The U.S. Department of Labor reported last week that employers added just 210,000 jobs, but also said the unemployment rate dropped to a pandemic low in October.

The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits fell to the lowest level in 52 years last week.