The unemployment rate fluctuated across North Bay Counties in November, however, the year over job growth remains steady.
While Sonoma, Solano and Marin counties experienced slight decreases in joblessness, Mendocino and Lake counties experienced slight increases for the month. Napa took a large hit in jobs, falling from fourth to tenth lowest unemployment ranking in the state, according to new state figures.
The biggest loss of jobs in Napa over the month occurred in farming, losing 2,300 jobs. That industry nonetheless gained 100 the year over. Manufacturing, which includes wine making also lost 700 jobs for the month, but gained 900 for the year.
“With more and more wineries being built, tourism is definitely growing in Sonoma and Napa,” said Kelley Hartman, senior vice president at Nelson staffing.
Leisure and hospitality is still making large gains in Napa as well.
“The local economy is rooted in the wine industry and related tourism; hospitality workers are a crucial component of those roots. With unemployment hovering near record lows, new hotels and restaurants opening, and housing costs remaining high, sourcing the workers necessary to fill these newly created positions continues to be a challenge. Employers need to be conscious of all the current market conditions affecting worker availability as they plan their 2017 workforce and compensation strategies,” Hartman said.
Across the North Bay, there has also been a gain in accounting, IT, and manufacturing jobs, particularly in Sonoma, where professional and business services has gained 1,600 jobs over the year.
Government also saw an increase of 1,400 jobs in Sonoma, which can be partly attributed to an increase in services for an aging demographic, said Heather LoBue, business services program manager, Sonoma County Economic Development Board.
The unemployment rate in the Sonoma County was 3.7 percent in November 2016, down from a revised 3.9 percent in October, and below the year-ago estimate of 4.3 percent.
This compares with an unadjusted unemployment rate of 5 percent for California and 4.4 percent for the nation during the same period.
The county tied with Orange for fifth lowest jobless rate in the state, preceded by Santa Clara, San Francisco, Marin, and San Mateo counties. Napa County dropped to tenth in the state, also tying with Placer County.
The number of Sonoma County nonfarm jobs for the month was down 800, to 203,100 and up 2,900 for the year, at 1.4 percent. Farming employment for the month was down 1,500, to 4,500, and unchanged for the year.
Leading job-adding industries over the year were professional and business services up 1,600, or 7.3 percent, to 23,400; government, up 1,400, or 4.4 percent, to 33,500; and trade, transportation and utilities up 600, or 1.6 percent, to 37,300.
Job-losing sectors over the year were and educational and health services down 1,000, to 31,900; and leisure and hospitality, down 400, to 24,700.
The unemployment rate in the Solano County was 5.1 percent in November 2016, down from a revised 5.3 percent in October, and below the year-ago estimate of 5.8 percent.
Nonfarm job growth for the month was up 1,100 for the month, to 138,900, and for the year was up 3,000 positions, or 2.2 percent. Farming jobs were down 200 for the month, and down 100 for the year, with 1,600 jobs, or -5.9 percent.