North Bay jobless rates rise in July

Unemployment rates ticked up across the North Bay in July, as end-of-school-year staffing changes dragged on jobs data for a second month, according to preliminary state figures released Friday.Sonoma County

[caption id="attachment_97579" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Annual job growth for Sonoma County was 1.6 percent for July alone but 3.3 percent on a three-month moving average that balances out school-year employment fluctuations.[/caption]

The estimated unemployment rate in the Sonoma County was 5.8 percent last month, up from a revised 5.3 percent in June but far below the year-ago estimate of 7.0 percent.

This compares with an unadjusted unemployment rate of 7.8 percent for California and 6.5 percent for the nation during the same period.

Among five of the six North Bay counties to remain in top third of the 58 California counties with the lowest rates of unemployment, Sonoma County ranked No. 6, ahead of Mendocino County at No. 14 and Solano County at No. 19 but after Napa County at No. 4 and Marin County still at No. 1. Lake County ranked No. 40.

Year-over-year job growth was 1.6 percent for Sonoma County, up 3,100 jobs. The 1,900 additional jobs connected to the new Graton Resort & Casino continue to the big boost in that growth figure. Yet there was 3.4 percent growth in manufacturing, with 700 more jobs; 8.2 percent growth in administrative and support services, up 700 jobs; and 2.8 percent growth in general merchandise stores, up a net of 100 jobs, despite a 1.7 percent, or 400 job, drop in retail employment overall.Solano County

Solano County's unemployment rate was 7.2 percent in July, up from a revised 6.8 percent rate in June but below the 8.6 percent estimate of a year ago.

Industry employment grew 1.2 percent, or by 1,500 jobs, to 128,900 in the past 12 months. The leading job-gaining industry over the year was trade, transportation and utilities, up 2.3 percent, or 600 positions, to 26,300. In that industry, retail went up 1.7 percent, or 300 jobs, to 17,600, and wholesale trade, 4.8 percent, 200 jobs, to 4,400.

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