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California’s Jobless Rate Dips… But It’s Way Worse Than North Dakota’s

| March 29, 2013
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Quick, what is California doing as well as Mississippi and Nevada but worse than all the other states? As you might have guessed from the headline of this post, the answer is “hire people.”

(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

In February, the Golden State’s jobless rate drifted down to 9.6 percent in preliminary estimates. It’s only a modest drop from January’s rate of 9.8 percent. Still, it continues a positive trend that began back in November 2010 when the rate dropped from its peak of 12.4 percent the month before.

At this rate, it will take us years to get back to the pre-recession rate of about 5 percent, which the state enjoyed in 2006.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has scads of California historical data, including trend lines that show how the labor force has been increasing steadily while employment rises and falls.

It also offers a breakdown of which sectors have added jobs and which have subtracted them. (Construction is up 6.2 percent, further evidence that the housing crisis is ending.)

And it has another database showing the unemployment rates by state. (Interested in moving to North Dakota? You’ll find only 3.3 percent unemployment there. Consider also Nebraska, South Dakota, Vermont or Wyoming, all under 5 percent. We hear the winters are a bit cooler in those states, but that’s expected to change in coming years.)

Here’s the press release from the California Employment Development Department offering a wonkfest of detail, including county-by-county stats:

California’s unemployment rate decreased to 9.6 percent in February, and nonfarm payroll jobs increased by 41,200 during the month for a total gain of 725,100 jobs since the recovery began in February 2010, according to data released today by the California Employment Development Department (EDD) from two separate surveys.

The U.S. unemployment rate also decreased in February to 7.7 percent.

In January, the state’s unemployment rate was 9.8 percent, and in February 2012, the unemployment rate was 10.8 percent. The unemployment rate is derived from a federal survey of 5,500 California households.

Nonfarm jobs in California totaled 14,570,400 in February, an increase of 41,200 jobs over the month, according to a survey of businesses that is larger and less variable statistically. The survey of 42,000 California businesses measures jobs in the economy. The year-over-year change (February 2012 to February 2013) shows an increase of 293,800 jobs (up 2.1 percent)

EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT IN CALIFORNIA

The federal survey of households, done with a smaller sample than the survey of employers, shows an increase in the number of employed people. It estimates the number of Californians holding jobs in February was 16,850,000, an increase of 73,000 from January 2013, and up 368,000 from the employment total in February of last year.

The number of people unemployed in California was 1,792,000 – down by 26,000 over the month, and down by 209,000 compared with February of last year.

PAYROLL EMPLOYMENT DETAIL (SEASONALLY ADJUSTED)

EDD’s report on payroll employment (wage and salary jobs) in the nonfarm industries of California totaled 14,570,400 in February, a net gain of 41,200 jobs since the January survey. This followed a gain of 4,200 jobs (as revised) in January.

Six categories (construction; information; financial activities; professional and business services; leisure and hospitality; and government) added jobs over the month, gaining 57,700 jobs. Leisure and hospitality posted the largest increase over the month, adding 15,700 jobs.

Four categories (manufacturing; trade, transportation and utilities; educational and health services; and other services) reported job declines over the month, down 16,500 jobs. Trade, transportation and utilities posted the largest decrease over the month, down 7,000 jobs. One category, mining and logging, was unchanged over the month.

In a year-over-year comparison (February 2012 to February 2013), nonfarm payroll employment in California increased by 293,800 jobs (up 2.1 percent).

Eight categories (construction; trade, transportation and utilities; information; financial activities; professional and business services; educational and health services; leisure and hospitality; and other services) posted job gains over the year, adding 310,300 jobs. Professional and business services posted the largest gains on a numerical basis, adding 77,800 jobs (up 3.5 percent). Construction posted the largest gains on a percentage basis, up 6.2 percent (adding 35,800 jobs).

Three categories (mining and logging; manufacturing; and government) posted job declines over the year, down 16,500 jobs. Government posted the largest declines on a numerical basis, down by 9,500 jobs (a 0.4 percent decrease). Mining and logging posted the largest declines on a percentage basis, decreasing by 0.7 percent (down 200 jobs).

UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE CLAIMS (NOT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED)

In related data, the EDD reported that there were 487,497 people receiving regular unemployment insurance benefits during the February survey week. This compares with 519,632 last month and 565,418 last year. At the same time, new claims for unemployment insurance were 41,698 in February 2013, compared with 68,907 in January and 55,287 in February of last year.

PAYROLL EMPLOYMENT, SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA2

(Amounts in thousands)

 

Industrial Classification

February 2013

(prelim.)

January 2013

(revised)

February 2012

Change Over

12 Months

(Percent)

Nonagricultural Wage andSalary Workers . . . . . . . . . . . .

14,570.4

14,529.2

14,276.6

2.1

Mining and logging . . . . . . . .

29.9

29.9

30.1

-0.7

Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . .

616.9

611.2

581.1

6.2

Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . .

1,243.7

1,247.0

1,250.5

-0.5

Trade, transportation andutilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2,747.8

2,754.8

2,702.0

1.7

Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

432.9

421.1

425.3

1.8

Financial activities . . . . . . . .

785.0

781.1

767.1

2.3

Professional and businessservices . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2,281.2

2,271.8

2,203.4

3.5

Educational and healthservices . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

1,903.7

1,907.1

1,860.8

2.3

Leisure and hospitality . . . . .Other services . . . . . . . . . . .Government* . . . . . . . . . . . .

1,649.4

507.0

2,372.9

1,633.7

509.8

2,361.7

1,572.2

501.7

2,382.4

4.9

1.1

-0.4

Agriculture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

408.5

402.1

397.3

2.8

*Includes all civilian employees of federal, state, and local governments.

 

TABLE A

EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT IN CALIFORNIA, SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA2

 

February 2013

(prelim.)

January 2013

(revised)

December 2012

February 2012

Civilian labor forcea . . . . . . . . . .

18,642,000

18,594,000

18,558,000

18,483,000

Total civilian employment . . . . . .

16,850,000

16,777,000

16,745,000

16,482,000

Unemployment . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

        1,792,000

1,818,000

1,813,000

2,001,000

Seasonally adjusted rate % . . . .

9.6

9.8

9.8

10.8

US seasonally adjusted rate % .

7.7

7.9

7.8

8.3

TABLE B

EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT IN CALIFORNIA, UNADJUSTED DATA

 

 

February 2013

(prelim.)

January 2013

(revised)

December 2012

February 2012

Civilian labor forcea . . . . . . . . . .

18,647,000

18,556,000

18,540,000

18,475,000

Total civilian employment . . . . . .

16,837,000

16,632,000

16,731,000

16,391,000

Unemployment . . . . . . . . . . . .

1,810,000

1,925,000

1,809,000

2,084,000

Unadjusted rate % . . . . . . . . .

9.7

10.4

9.8

11.3

aLabor force by place of residence including workers involved in trade disputes.

2Seasonal adjustment is a statistical method that removes typical employment patterns that occur at various times throughout the year (e.g., additional retail hiring during the holiday season).

MONTHLY LABOR FORCE DATA FOR COUNTIES

                                               February 2013 (Preliminary); 2012 BENCHMARK

NOT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED

 

 

 

  COUNTY

         LABOR FORCE

EMPLOYMENT

UNEMPLOYMENT

      RATE* STATE TOTAL

18,646,900

16,836,500

1,810,400

9.7%

 

 ALAMEDA

783,000

720,400

62,600

8.0%

  ALPINE

580

530

50

9.3%

  AMADOR

16,280

14,450

1,830

11.2%

  BUTTE

102,200

90,200

11,900

11.7%

  CALAVERAS

18,900

16,550

2,360

12.5%

  COLUSA

11,450

8,490

2,960

25.9%

  CONTRA COSTA

541,500

497,700

43,900

8.1%

  DEL NORTE

11,450

10,040

1,410

12.3%

  EL DORADO

91,100

82,300

8,800

9.6%

  FRESNO

438,800

371,300

67,500

15.4%

  GLENN

12,740

10,880

1,860

14.6%

  HUMBOLDT

59,900

54,000

5,900

9.8%

  IMPERIAL

77,200

58,500

18,700

24.2%

  INYO

9,440

8,580

870

9.2%

  KERN

395,000

341,500

53,600

13.6%

  KINGS

61,500

51,900

9,600

15.6%

  LAKE

25,170

21,520

3,640

14.5%

  LASSEN

12,580

10,930

1,650

13.1%

  LOS ANGELES

4,925,100

4,418,400

506,700

10.3%

  MADERA

69,600

60,500

9,200

13.2%

  MARIN

142,100

134,500

7,600

5.4%

  MARIPOSA

8,930

7,890

1,040

11.7%

  MENDOCINO

42,280

38,340

3,940

9.3%

  MERCED

113,100

92,900

20,200

17.8%

  MODOC

3,700

3,140

560

15.1%

  MONO

9,020

8,300

730

8.1%

  MONTEREY

226,000

195,600

30,400

13.5%

  NAPA

78,500

73,000

5,500

7.0%

  NEVADA

51,320

46,910

4,420

8.6%

  ORANGE

1,635,900

1,528,900

107,100

6.5%

  PLACER

179,200

164,300

14,900

8.3%

  PLUMAS

9,280

7,740

1,540

16.6%

  RIVERSIDE

953,800

850,000

103,800

10.9%

  SACRAMENTO

682,300

617,200

65,200

9.5%

  SAN BENITO

27,700

23,500

4,200

15.0%

  SAN BERNARDINO

870,900

777,300

93,600

10.7%

  SAN DIEGO

1,614,000

1,485,400

128,600

8.0%

  SAN FRANCISCO

483,400

453,100

30,400

6.3%

  SAN JOAQUIN

299,200

255,400

43,900

14.7%

  SAN LUIS OBISPO

145,400

135,100

10,200

7.0%

  SAN MATEO

399,800

376,300

23,500

5.9%

  SANTA BARBARA

230,900

213,200

17,700

7.7%

  SANTA CLARA

924,300

856,000

68,300

7.4%

  SANTA CRUZ

154,400

136,200

18,300

11.8%

  SHASTA

79,900

69,600

10,400

13.0%

  SIERRA

1,540

1,300

240

15.3%

  SISKIYOU

18,800

15,720

3,080

16.4%

  SOLANO

218,700

198,400

20,300

9.3%

  SONOMA

259,100

239,400

19,700

7.6%

  STANISLAUS

237,900

202,400

35,500

14.9%

  SUTTER

42,800

34,800

8,000

18.7%

  TEHAMA

25,210

21,850

3,360

13.3%

  TRINITY

4,770

4,000

770

16.1%

  TULARE

209,000

175,700

33,300

15.9%

  TUOLUMNE

25,570

22,720

2,850

11.1%

  VENTURA

446,900

410,600

36,300

8.1%

  YOLO

100,600

88,400

12,100

12.1%

  YUBA

27,100

22,800

4,300

15.9%

 

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Category: Economics, Economy, Labor

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  • Jim

    The reason North Dakota has such a low unemployment rate is because no one wants to live there. Anyone who doesn’t have a job just leaves. People don’t leave California, they stick around until they find something.