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Friday, August 16, 2013, 1:10 pm

North Bay unemployment rates rise in July

Sonoma County job growth slows to 0.6 percent

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    North Bay jobless rates and job growth - March 2003-July 2013

    North Bay jobless rates and job growth, March 2003–July 2013 (sources: California Employment Development and North Bay Business Journal; click to enlarge)

    Unemployment rates rose in North Bay counties in July rose a few 10ths of a percentage point, while annual job growth mostly was in positive territory, despite slowing significantly in the region’s largest county, according to state figures released Friday.

    The unemployment rate in Sonoma County was 7.1 percent in July, up from a revised 6.7 percent in June, and below the year-ago estimate of 8.9 percent, according to the Employment Development Department.

    By comparison, preliminary unemployment rates in July were 9.3 percent in California and 7.7 percent for the nation.

    Year-over-year job growth in Sonoma County slowed to 0.6 percent, the annual pace of a year before. One thousand net new jobs increased industry employment to 178,800.

    The biggest net movement in jobs over the year was the loss of 1,000 government jobs. That was barely offset by 600 job gains in professional and business services, health care, and leisure and hospitality, as well as 500 more retail jobs.

    Solano County‘s unemployment rate was 8.5 percent in July, up from a revised 8.2 percent in June, and below the year-ago estimate of 10.6 percent.

    Job growth over the year in Solano was 2.6 percent, providing a net gain of 3,200 jobs. Leading job-creating industries from a year ago were health care, adding 1,000; retail, 800; leisure and hospitality, 700; and construction, 600.

    Industries losing jobs in Solano over 12 months were government, down 500, and information and manufacturing, both 100 positions lower.

    Marin County continued to have the state’s lowest jobless rate, 5.3 percent. That was up slightly from a revised rate of 5.1 percent in June and 6.8 percent in July 2012.

    Industry employment figures for 2013 aren’t yet available for Marin, but state estimates for 2012 became available Friday. Annual job growth accelerated last year from 1.6 percent in January to around 4 percent by the end of 2012, averaging 3.0 percent for the year.

    Marin employment was estimated to be 107,800 at the end of 2012.

    The unemployment rate in the Napa County was 6.0 percent in July, up from a revised 5.8 percent in June, and below the year-ago estimate of 7.8 percent.

    Industry employment in the county increased by 2,700 positions, or 3.9 percent, to 71,800 from a year before. Job leaders over the 12-month period were manufacturing, which includes wineries, with 1,100 more; leisure and hospitality, 900 more; and retail and construction, each with 400 more.

    The jobless rate in Mendocino County rose to 7.9 percent from a revised 7.4 percent in June. Yet the rate last month improved significantly from 9.7 percent in July 2012.

    Lake County‘s jobless rate was 12.5 percent in July, up from a revised 12.0 percent in June but down from 14.9 percent the previous July.

    The number of industry jobs decreased 0.9 percent from a year before, a net decline of 130 positions. The biggest decline over the year came from 110 fewer leisure and hospitality jobs, while government jobs increased 1.4 percent, or by 50 jobs.

    North Bay unemployment rates in July

    County State rank Jobless
    rate
    Lake 47 12.5%
    Marin 1 5.3%
    Mendocino 16 7.9%
    Napa 4 6.0%
    Solano 23 8.5%
    Sonoma 8 7.1%

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