Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Lower unemployment rate reflects increase of 800 local jobs

Lower unemployment rate reflects increase of 800 local jobs

By Todd R. Hansen From page A1 | April 22, 2017

FAIRFIELD — The unemployment rate in Solano County dipped slightly to 5.2 percent in March, pushed by Leisure & Hospitality and the Trade, Transportation and Utility sectors.

Leisure & Hospitality added 500 jobs from February. Trade, Transportation and Utility added 300. There were 800 more local jobs reported across all sectors, according to the Labor Market Information Division of the state Employment Development Department.

The Solano jobless rate in February was 5.3 percent, the EDD reported.

The state unemployment rate for March was reported at 5.1 percent, down from 5.2. The national rate was 4.6 percent, down from 4.9, the EDD reported.

One area of concern, the report shows, is a decline of 200 jobs in construction, which is also one of the few employment sectors which is also lower than it was last year at the same time.

The construction sector reported 9,800 jobs in March, down from 10,000 in February and down from 9,900 in March 2016, the EDD reported.

In all, there were 207,600 eligible residents in the workforce, with 196,800 employed and 10,900 unemployed, the EDD reported. The number of unemployed reflects only 200 fewer than the number seeking unemployment benefits in February. The workforce number is 600 higher.

The retail trades gained 200 jobs in March, while Business and Professional Services lost 200 jobs. The rest of the finance sector stayed fairly consistent, while the Private Education and Health Care sector added 100 jobs – all in the health fields, the EDD reported.

The number of local, state and federal government jobs remained the same as February, 25,900, but are up 500 jobs since the same time in 2016, the EDD reported. That includes public schools.

Benicia continues to have the lowest jobless rate for Solano cities, coming in a 3.3 percent in March, the same as February. Rio Vista continues to have the highest unemployment rate at 10.5 percent, down from 10.7 percent a month earlier, the EDD reported.

Vallejo had a jobless rate of 7.1 percent, down from 7.3, followed by Fairfield at 4.7 percent, down from 4.8, then Suisun City at 4.5 percent, down from 4.7. Dixon was at 4.5 percent, down from 4.6, and Vacaville was at 4.2 percent, down from 4.3, the EDD reported.

The highest unemployment rate for any county in California was experienced in Colusa County at 21.8 percent, but a full percentage point lower than February’s mark of 22.8 percent. The next closest is Imperial County at 19.4 percent, up from 18.4 percent, the EDD reported.

The lowest rate is found in San Mateo at 2.7 percent. Marin and San Francisco counties reported 3 percent jobless rates.

Five other counties, three in the Bay Area – Santa Clara (3.4 percent), Alameda (3.9 percent), Sonoma (3.6 percent) – were below 4 percent, the EDD reported. Orange (3.7 percent) and San Luis Obispo (3.8 percent) were the other two.

Reach Todd R. Hansen at 427-6932 or thansen@dailyrepublic.net.