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December Continues California’s Unemployment Rate Drop

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Sonora, CA – California’s unemployment rate fell during the holidays.

The state rate dipped a half-percentage point in December to 6.5% from 7% in November. That accounts for more than a quarter of the nation’s job growth for the month, say state economic officials.  The state has now regained nearly 72% of the 2.7 million jobs it lost in the spring of 2020 after Gov. Gavin Newsom issued the nation’s first statewide stay-at-home order to combat the spread of coronavirus.

“California continues to create an outsized share of the nation’s new jobs, with 25 percent of the entire country’s job creation happening right here – part of the record 1 million new jobs that our state created throughout last year’s economic recovery,” said Newsom.

Tuolumne and Calaveras counties followed that declining trend. Tuolumne dipped from 5.4% in November to 5.2% last month. There remains 1,020 unemployed out of the county’s 19,600 workforce. After holding steady in September and October, Calaveras County carried on its 4.2% November deceased dropping to 3.9% in December. That has left 840 individuals without a job out of the 21,580 workforce.

California’s rate is down from 9.3% a year ago as the state added nearly a million jobs since December 2020 with the professional and business services sector regaining all the jobs it lost at the start of the pandemic, according to the EDD. Despite pressures from the latest omicron wave, the December data showed out of the 11 sectors 10 made job gains with leisure and hospitality leading the way with 15,000. That included significant gains in food services and drinking places. Mining and logging remained relatively unchanged.

“As we go forward this year, we’ll continue taking action to get more folks back to work and support our businesses hit hardest by the pandemic,” claimed Newsom.

Of note, the EDD revised November’s unemployment rate up 0.1 percentage points to 7% by adding 3,500 unemployed to its previous tally. The nation’s jobless rate is 3.9%.