North Bay jobless rates rise in November

NORTH BAY -- Unemployment rates in North Bay counties rose 50 to 130 basis points in November from a year before, but the jobless rates in Marin and Sonoma counties remained unchanged at high levels, according to state figures released this morning.

The end of the North Coast winegrape harvest, which stretched into November in some areas, were big drivers in month-to-month jobless rate jumps in Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino and Lake counties.

Sonoma County rate remains unchanged, with health care and services offsetting cuts in construction and government

The unemployment rate in the Sonoma County last month was 10.1 percent, unchanged from a year ago, according to the Employment Development Department.

The rate moved up 30 basis points from an adjusted 9.7 percent in October. That was led by 1,500 fewer farm jobs and 400 fewer in production of nondurable goods such as wine, following the late winegrape harvest. Offsetting that were continued staffing up as the school year began and retail hiring for the big holiday selling season, with 400 more in retail trade. The retail sector had slight declines in hiring compared with November 2009.

Over the 12-month period ending last month, the county had a net loss of 600 jobs. The industries with the largest year-over-year net losses continued to be construction and government, with 800 each. The biggest job gains came in health care, with 800 net new jobs, or 4.4 percent annual growth, and professional and business services, with 300 net additional positions, or 1.6 percent growth.


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