North Bay Business Journal

Friday, May 17, 2013, 12:12 pm

Unemployment rates fall across North Coast


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    Unemployment rates across the North Coast continued to fall, with every county improving its jobless rate over both the last month and over the year, according to figures released by the Economic Development Department.

    Sonoma County’s unemployment rate in April was 6.5 percent, down from 7.3 percent in March and below last year’s rate of 8.7 percent. It’s the first time Sonoma County’s rate has dipped below 7 percent in April since 2008, according to Linda Wong, North Bay labor market consultant for the EDD.

    Over the year, Sonoma County added 5,700 jobs, with the government sector adding 1,300 jobs while trade, transportation and utilities and leisure and hospitality added 1,100 and 1,000 jobs, respectively. Education and health services added 900 jobs over the year, while construction added 500.

    Over the month, hospitality led the way in adding 300 jobs as the summer tourist season draws closer, while manufacturing added 200 jobs.

    Marin County continued to post the lowest rate in California, with a rate of 4.6 percent April, down from 5.2 percent in March.

    Napa County saw its rate drop to 5.9 percent, down from a revised 6.8 percent in March and below last year’s rate of 8.1 percent. The county grew its workforce by 4,000, with manufacturing adding 1,100 jobs while hospitality and construction each added 800 jobs.

    Solano County’s rate dropped to 8.1 percent, down from 8.9 percent in March and 10.1 percent a year ago.  The county added 3,100 jobs over the year, with construction adding 1,000, while the trades added another 800 jobs. Leisure and hospitality added 400.

    Lake County’s April jobless rate fell to 12.8 percent, down from 14 percent last month and 15.6 percent a year ago. Farming added 160 jobs over the year, while government added 80.

    Mendocino County’s rate fell to 8 percent, down a point from March and below last year’s rate of 10.2 percent. Leisure and hospitality led the rebound, adding 220 jobs over the year.

    The comparable rate across California was 9 percent in April, down from 9.4 percent in March. Nationally, the unemployment rate fell to 7.1 percent in April from 7.6 percent in March.

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